The Effect of Poverty Status and Public Housing Residency on Residential Energy Consumption in the U.S.
Keywords:energy demand, public housing, low-income households,
We use the U.S. Residential Energy Consumption Survey (RECS) for 2001 and 2005 to estimate household energy demand as a function of a composite energy price. We find a short-run price elasticity of -0.6 and a short-run income elasticity of 0.04 in the full sample, with poverty-level households having slightly higher price elasticities and lower income elasticities. Public housing residents use about 10% less energy than non-residents, a difference that persists despite a large set of household and dwelling controls and even with the analysis restricted to poverty-level households, multifamily housing occupants, and renters. Thus, the findings suggest that energy conservation measures undertaken by housing authorities have been effective at reducing energy consumption relative to similarly-situated households. Analysis by fuel type and use suggests that the relatively low energy use of public housing residents among multifamily renters is driven by their lower use of natural gas for space heating, and electricity and natural gas for appliances.
Rights for Authors
As further described in our submission agreement (the Submission Agreement), in consideration for publication of the article, the authors assign to Energy Studies Review all copyright in the article, subject to the expansive personal--use exceptions described below.
Attribution and Usage Policies
Reproduction, posting, transmission or other distribution or use of the article or any material therein, in any medium as permitted by a personal-use exemption or by written agreement of Energy Studies Review, requires credit to Energy Studies Review as copyright holder (e.g., Energy Studies Review © 2014).
The following uses are always permitted to the author(s) and do not require further permission from DigitalCommons@McMaster provided the author does not alter the format or content of the articles, including the copyright notification:
- Storage and back-up of the article on the author's computer(s) and digital media (e.g., diskettes, back-up servers, Zip disks, etc.), provided that the article stored on these computers and media is not readily accessible by persons other than the author(s);
- Posting of the article on the author(s) personal website, provided that the website is non-commercial;
- Posting of the article on the internet as part of a non-commercial open access institutional repository or other non-commercial open access publication site affiliated with the author(s)'s place of employment (e.g., a Phrenology professor at the University of Southern North Dakota can have her article appear in the University of Southern North Dakota's Department of Phrenology online publication series); and
- Posting of the article on a non-commercial course website for a course being taught by the author at the university or college employing the author.
People seeking an exception, or who have questions about use, should contact the editors.