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An Empirical Analysis of Determinants of Commercial and Industrial Electricity Consumption

Keywords: Electricity consumption , electricity prices , energy efficiency programs

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Abstract:

The present empirical study focuses on identifying key economic factors and other conditions that have influenced the per customercommercial and industrial consumption of electricity in the U.S. during recent years. Unlike most previous studies, this study uses astate-level panel data set for the period 2002 through 2005. The three panel two-stage least squares (P2SLS) estimates provided inthis study imply that per customer commercial and industrial electricity consumption is an increasing function of the annual numberof cooling degree days, per capita real disposable income (a de facto “control” variable), and the peak summer electricity generatingcapacity. Furthermore, per customer commercial and industrial electricity consumption is a decreasing function of the average realunit price of electricity to commercial and industrial enterprises and the degree of each state’s commitment to energy efficiencyprograms, as reflected in a “LEEP” score. The latter result provides evidence that public policies to promote energy efficiency haveyielded some benefits, albeit modest, in terms of reducing commercial and industrial electricity consumption.

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