By R. Sree Ram and Mobis Philipose

Electricity consumption data collated by the Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago shows a striking decline in the case of India, when compared to the US and the European Union (EU).

Researchers at the institute compared current energy consumption with levels in December 2019, and found that this has fallen between 18.5% and 24.9% from 25 March to 5 April. For the EU, the drop was between 4% and 9.5%, while in the US, energy consumption fell 2.5-6.9% (see chart).

Consumption of electricity is known to follow economic activity closely, and India’s sharper fall reflects its far more severe lockdown compared to many other countries.

Fiona Burlig, assistant professor of public policy at University of Chicago, said in an interview with Axios: “The electricity consumption in India in the first week of April 2020 is back at 2013–14 levels—a pretty shocking decline.”

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