By Ben Geman
Residential electricity consumption rose 10% in the second quarter as the pandemic kept many people at home, new research shows.
Why it matters: The new paper from Tufts University economist Steve Cicala is another window onto how COVID-19 is shifting energy use patterns and creating financial hardship.
By the numbers: The average monthly power bill rose by almost $11 per household in April-July.
- But “one fifth of the population is serviced by a utility whose mean bill has risen by at least $20/month,” writes Cicala, who’s also affiliated with the University of Chicago’s Energy Policy Institute.
- Overall, this extra energy cost U.S. households almost $6 billion in the April-July stretch.