Residential Electricity Use Increases Due to More Work from Home

As companies ask their employees to work from home more, residential energy usage is on the rise. In comparison to 2016-2019, residential electricity usage in 2020 has increased by 10%, commercial electricity usage has decreased by 12%, and industrial electricity usage has decreased by 14%. Particularly, this has been the case in the most densely populated areas of the U.S., such as New England, Illinois, and California.

It is estimated that the increased in residential usage has nearly offset the that which was lost in commercial and industrial usage. From April-July 2020, American homes spent $6B in excess for electricity, paying approximately $20 extra per month.

The effects on the environment of working from home are not fully understood, but indicators suggest that it can increase emissions in the long run. Individually cooling and heating each home consumes more energy than doing the same for office buildings, schools, and other spaces of congregation.