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Energy Savings from More Efficient Appliances: A Rejoinder

In his article (Lovins, 1988) responding to my Note (Khazzoom, 1987), Amory Lovins makes a series of allegations. I find they contain precious little substance. Space limitations preclude a response to each one of Lovins' points, but I will address some of the specifics. The following overall observations convey perhaps in a nutshell some of the difficulties with the article that emerge from the discussion of the specifics below: (i) The article makes statements about facts, which are not supported by the evidence; (ii) The article holds contradictory positions and makes inconsistent statements, with little or no effort at probing into their implications; (iii) A depressing aspect of the article that the serious reader has to contend with is the lack of command of the basics of economics the article reveals. There is rattling with economic terminology and there are grand-sounding statements about economics, but it is not clear the author knows quite what they all mean. I turn to these below. But I would like to clarify the procedure 1 will be following. Lovins' article is substantially made up of quotes from the unpublished work by the National Resources Defense Council. In preparing the present rejoinder, I have made the assumption that since Lovins used the quotes to elaborate on points that he made (often in two lines or less), the statements he quoted say what he would have said, had he written the elaboration in his own words. I hope this clarification will spare any future counterarguments that Lovins did not make these statements, but only quoted them.

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Energy Specializations: Energy Efficiency

JEL Codes:
Q55 - Environmental Economics: Technological Innovation

Keywords: Appliances, Energy efficiency, Energy savings

DOI: 10.5547/ISSN0195-6574-EJ-Vol10-No1-14

Published in Volume 10, Number 1 of The Quarterly Journal of the IAEE's Energy Economics Education Foundation.