EESL CEO emphasizes urgent need for public awareness to tackle rising electricity demand as21% rise in AC electricity consumption


Chilling Challenges: India’s Struggle with Rising Air Conditioner Demand

There are 24 AC units per 100 households, with a 21% rise in AC electricity consumption from 2019 to 2022, making up almost 10% of total electricity demand

  • Air conditioners now account for approximately 4.3% of India’s total electricity consumption
  • There’s an anticipated 20.8% increase in AC usage in 2024
  • Anticipated ninefold increase in air conditioner ownership by 2050
  • Goals include reducing cooling energy needs by 25-40% and cutting refrigerant demand by 25-30% by 2038
  • The Production Linked Incentives (PLI) program supports domestic manufacturing
  • A default setting of 24 degrees Celsius in air conditioners is encouraged
  • Energy-efficient appliances and building insulation are promoted
  • EESL has launched India’s first Super-Efficient Air Conditioner, offering a 50% boost in efficiency
  • EESL CEO emphasizes the urgent need for public awareness to tackle the rising electricity demand
  • Initiatives aim to reduce strain on the electricity grid
  • Strategic solar PV module investments align with India’s 2030 goal of using 50% non-fossil fuel electricity

Vijayawada, October 29: Amidst mounting challenges posed by the soaring demand for air conditioners and their substantial impact on India’s electricity consumption, Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL)  has urged the public and stakeholders to adopt energy-efficient practices and support initiatives like the 24-degree Celsius default setting in air conditioners, aiming for a greener and more sustainable India.

The rising demand for air conditioners presents significant challenges for India, affecting the nation’s electricity demand. The Government of India is actively implementing measures to mitigate the impact and address these challenges.

Driven by over 700 heatwaves in the last five decades, causing 17,000 deaths, India faces a surge in air conditioner demand. With 24 AC units per 100 households, cooling electricity consumption increased by 21% between 2019 and 2022, constituting nearly 10% of total demand. Air conditioners now contribute to about 4.3% of India’s electricity consumption. Anticipating a 20.8% increase in AC usage in 2024, urgent measures are needed to enhance energy efficiency and sustainable practices.

In response, Indian government agencies like Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) and EESL have launched campaigns to counter these challenges. International agency reports predict a ninefold increase in household air conditioner ownership by 2050, potentially surpassing the electricity consumption of the entire African continent.

To address this, the Government of India introduced the Production Linked Incentives (PLI) program, investing USD 2.5 billion in boosting domestic manufacturing, including solar PV modules. BEE and EESL have played crucial roles, advocating a default setting of 24 degrees Celsius in air conditioners and promoting energy-efficient appliances. India aims to reduce cooling energy requirements by 25% to 40% and decrease refrigerant demand by 25%-30% by 2038, alleviating strain on the country’s electricity grid.

In response to escalating electricity demand driven by the surge in air conditioner usage, EESL launched India’s first Super-Efficient Air Conditioner, providing a 50% boost in efficiency compared to 3-star rated ACs and 20% more than  5-star rated ACs. This move, part of EESL’s program expansion to curb peak power demand, offers consumers a sustainable and affordable cooling solution while significantly reducing electricity bills.

EESL CEO Vishal Kapoor, after reviewing discussions with CGMs Animesh Mishra, Anil Choudary, Savitri Singh, and State units, emphasizes the crucial need for sustainable energy solutions amidst escalating electricity demand due to rising air conditioner usage. He underscores the urgency for public awareness campaigns to address this issue.

India has reduced cooling needs by implementing building codes, energy-efficient appliances, and demand response measures, easing the strain on the electricity grid. Strategic investments in solar PV module manufacturing, creating 48 GW of new capacity through the PLI program, align with India’s goal to source half of its electricity from non-fossil fuels by 2030. India’s multifaceted approach, blending policy reforms, energy efficiency, and domestic manufacturing incentives, underscores the nation's commitment to a sustainable and self-sufficient energy future.

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