A new study from Boston University School of Public Health(BUSPH) finds that increasing insulation levels in existing U.S. single-family homes to the 2012 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) level would, in total across the United States, cut electricity consumption by 37 billion kilowatt hours. This reduction is equivalent to the annual electricity usage of 3.4 million U.S. homes. In addition, increased insulation would slash residential natural gas consumption, reduce propane use and fuel oil consumption.
Curt Rich, president and CEO of NAIMA said, “Approximately 90 percent of U.S. homes are under-insulated and this study now provides data describing what we could achieve by addressing this huge population of homes.” Researchers developed a comprehensive model of the economic, climate and public health benefits of increased insulation, for all single-family homes, to the levels in the 2012 IECC, the primary model building energy code in the U.S. today. Increased residential insulation would reduce annual CO2 emissions from power plants by 80 million tons, and produce other benefits, including 320 fewer premature deaths per year associated with air pollution from power plants and direct residential combustion.
“Our study provides insight about the benefits of residential energy efficiency. Our results align with previously published values that show important benefits of increasing insulation levels in U.S. homes,” said BUSPH Professor Jonathan I. Levy, who led the research team that conducted the study.