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Carbon reduction in buildings (CaRB) - Understanding the social and technical factors that influence energy use in UK buildings

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Attempts to reduce the energy consumed in UK homes have met with limited success. One reason for this is a lack of understanding of how people interact with domestic technology – heating systems, lights, electrical equipment and so forth. Attaining such an understanding is hampered by a chronic shortage of detailed energy use data matched to descriptions of the house, the occupants, the internal conditions and the installed services and appliances. Without such information it is impossible to produce transparent and valid models for understanding and predicting energy use. The Carbon Reduction in Buildings (CaRB) consortium of five UK universities plans to develop socio-technical models of energy use, underpinned by a flow of data from a longitudinal monitoring campaign involving several hundred UK homes. This paper outlines the models proposed, the preliminary monitoring work and the structure of the proposed longitudinal study.

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