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The Price Elasticity of Electricity Demand in the United States: A Three-Dimensional Analysis

Paul J. Burke and Ashani Abayasekara

Year: 2018
Volume: Volume 39
Number: Number 2
DOI: 10.5547/01956574.39.2.pbur
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Abstract:
In this paper we employ a dataset of three dimensions - state, sector, and year - to estimate the short- and long-run price elasticities of state-level electricity demand in the United States. Our sample covers the period 2003-2015. We contribute to the literature by employing instrumental variable estimation approaches, using the between estimator, and pursuing panel specifications that enable us to control for multiple dimensions of fixed effects. We conclude that state-level electricity demand is very price inelastic in the short run, with a same-year elasticity of -0.1. The long-run elasticity is near -1, larger than often believed. Among the sectors, it is industry that has the largest long-run price elasticity of demand. This appears to in part be due to electricity-intensive industrial activities clustering in low-price states.



Factors Affecting Renters' Electricity Use: More Than Split Incentives

Rohan Best, Paul J. Burke, Shuhei Nishitateno

Year: 2021
Volume: Volume 42
Number: Number 5
DOI: 10.5547/01956574.42.5.rbes
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Abstract:
This paper uses data from the 2015 Residential Energy Consumption Survey to explore the extent to which renters’ electricity use in the United States exceeds that of otherwise similar non-renters. Renting households are found to use approximately 9% more electricity than non-renters when controlling for location, socioeconomic, and many appliance-quantity controls. There are multiple factors that explain this extra electricity use, including inferior energy efficiency of appliances, behavioral factors, differences in bill payment responsibilities, and additional reliance by renters on electric space and water heaters. The paper finds that none of these factors are dominant. The phenomenon of renters’ (conditionally) higher electricity use is thus best understood as one that emerges from multiple sources.





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