Lower Cost LEDs Will Reduce Light Prices, and Increase Quantity Consumed (Yes, Virginia, There Really Is a Law of Demand)

(p. A29) The growing evidence that low-cost efficiency often leads to faster energy growth was recently considered by both the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the International Energy Agency. They concluded that energy savings associated with new, more energy efficient technologies were likely to result in significant “rebounds,” or increases, in energy consumption. This means that very significant percentages of energy savings will be lost to increased energy consumption.
. . .
That’s not a bad thing. Most people in the world, still struggling to achieve modern living standards, need to consume more energy, not less. Cheap LED and other more efficient energy technologies will be overwhelmingly positive for people and economies all over the world.

For the full commentary, see:
MICHAEL SHELLENBERGER and TED NORDHAUS. “The Problem With Energy Efficiency.” The New York Times (Thurs., OCT. 9, 2014): A29.
(Note: ellipsis added.)
(Note: the online version of the commentary has the date OCT. 8, 2014.)

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