As Australia and other countries redouble efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, it is important to appreciate not only the total emissions challenge, but the potential for carbon mitigation in each sector of the economy. The Australian residential sector accounts for approximately 9.5 per cent of the nation’s greenhouse gas emissions and offers significant opportunities for mitigation, to which households are largely oblivious. These opportunities include an energy efficient building shell that minimises the need for artificial heating and cooling, energy efficient built-in appliances and plug-in appliances, and low or zero emission local energy generation. This paper focuses on plug-in appliances and identifies strategies for minimising greenhouse gas emissions as a function of decisions made on the number and type of appliances purchased for use in dwellings.
This paper is one of a series of companion papers which flow from a study by the authors into energy use and carbon dioxide emissions in residential buildings and local and distributed energy sources capable of winding back the carbon footprint of dwellings.