Here at Planet Forward, we don't think we're psychics, but here's a glimpse at what our energy future could look like! This week we featured an innovative new project from the University of Texas-Austin called the Pecan Street Project. Run by a non-profit research group, the project aims to increase collaboration between consumers and utility companies in order to save money for both of them. The project teams up with local households to monitor and look for patterns in energy use. This provides researchers with insight and information that, until this point, had been unavailable. For example, it was previously thought that solar panels were most efficient and captured the most solar energy when they faced the south. However, research from the Pecan Street project indicates that it's actually panels that face west that are more efficient. In fact, during peak time, houses with west-facing panels used just 11% of the energy used by houses without solar panels. What do you think? Can making consumers more aware of how much energy they use encourage them to be more energy-efficient? Let us know!
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