Swiss own more electrical appliances but consume less energy

Between 2002 and 2019, energy efficiency improved in all categories of appliances, which helped the Swiss to consume less electricity despite owning more appliances. Keystone / Alessandro Della Bella

Thanks to improvements in energy efficiency spurred by new technologies and incitement programmes, electricity consumption for appliances has fallen by 13% since 2002.

This content was published on December 10, 2020 - 12:32

In 2019, the Swiss owned 46.8 million pieces of electronic equipment, ranging from large household appliances to IT, office and leisure electronics – a 34% increase compared to 2002. But altogether these appliances consumed less energy than 18 years ago, for a drop of 1,030 million kWh, a study commissioned by the Federal Office of Energy revealed on Thursday.

Energy efficiency improved in all categories of appliances between 2002 and 2019 as a result of technological advances as well as incitement programmes like efficiency labels. Household equipment saw an average 28% improvement in efficiency, but gains were nearly twice that (54%) for IT and office equipment.

If household appliances had remained at the same energy efficiency level as 2002, they would have consumed an additional 2,029 million kWh of electricity, according to the report, which is based on data from Swiss associations of appliance manufacturers, suppliers, IT and office automation.

New efficiency labels for large appliances, such as refrigerators, washing machines and television screens, will be introduced across the European Union and Switzerland in March 2021. This change will likely lead to further gains in energy efficiency for these goods, the energy office added.

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