22 May '11, 1pm

Does Saving Energy Lead to More Energy Consumption?: The "energy rebound" theory says that the more efficient ou...

"Rebound" is an argument occasionally used by critics of energy efficiency policies. They assert that the more efficiently you use energy, the more energy you will use. Since efficiency drives down the costs of energy, the argument goes, people demand more energy, which negates some or all of the efficiency gains. The most extreme variation of the rebound argument is "backfire:" efficiency causes energy consumption to rise above the pre-efficiency level. Accordingly, if backfire is true, inefficiency results in less energy consumption. Or, to paraphrase an Amory Lovins joke about backfire, consumers should be required to waste energy in order to save energy. Let's get down to brass tacks: If I buy a hybrid-electric car with better mileage than my current wheels, rebound theorists say that I will drive more as a result, offsetting efficiency gains through increased gasoline...

Full article: http://www.thedailygreen.com/environmental-news/blogs/rep...

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