Impact of COVID-19 on the Utility Usage in Residential Buildings Throughout the Midwest
Keywords:COVID-19 pandemic, electricity usage, natural gas consumption, utilities, residential buildings
The global pandemic impacted all areas of life throughout the world. Everyone, except essential workers, were restricted to their homes for months. Stay at home orders were put into effect, which enforced closures or limitations to all public spaces such as restaurants, libraries, stores, and schools. With these restrictions put in place, the amount of time individuals stayed at home significantly increased. The more time people spent in their homes it is expected that there would be a direct correlation to the utility usage increasing as well. This paper explores the relationship between the utility usage in residential homes and the COVID-19 pandemic. A group of twenty-four students attending the University of Dayton were asked to collect the natural gas, electricity, and water usage from their residential buildings and document them from March of 2019 to March of 2021. These students were living all across the United States, but of the twenty-four households, eighteen were in the Midwest. The Midwest was then focused on since the weather is about the same throughout the region and there were a higher number of test subjects, so the usage was more accurate. This data was then used to determine a correlation, if any, between the restrictions put in place to control the spread of COVID-19 and the natural gas, electricity, and water usage in residential buildings throughout the United States. Through this data, some correlations were found between the pandemic and utilities in these residential buildings. The largest direct correlation found was with electricity usage, while minimal were found with natural gas, and no direct correlations were found between the pandemic and water usage.
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Copyright (c) 2022 Journal of Energy & Technology (JET) [U.S. ISSN 2768-1025]
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