Estimating energy consumption in Australia using a spatial microsimulation model

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Energy consumption is one of the growth areas of expenditure. As humans become more accustomed to the simplicity of climate control houses, people use more heating in winter and more air conditioning in summer. This means that electricity supply in Summer needs to cope with peak demands, and we have seen increasingly in Australia, as summers get hotter, brown outs in many capital cities as the energy suppliers struggle to cope with the peak demands for electricity to run air conditioning.


This paper shows how a spatial microsimulation model can been used to estimate energy consumption in Australia. The model uses estimates of the number of people in each family and the number of bedrooms in each household in an area from a spatial microsimulation model, and then applies average cost of electricity for the city estimated from the ABS Household Expenditure Survey for each of these types of households. The resulting estimates are household based, but rely on average household expenditure by household type for the city. These estimates are then compared to estimates of energy expenditure directly from a spatial microsimulation model of the HES to identify any differences in the results from each technique.


 The final output will be two fold: estimates of small area energy consumption, but also some idea of whether a spatial microsimulation modelling and imputation approach provides better estimates than a straight spatial microsimulation modelling approach.



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