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How Much Energy Do Building Energy Codes Save? Evidence from California Houses

Arik Levinson ()

American Economic Review, 2016, vol. 106, issue 10, 2867-94

Abstract: Regulations governing the energy efficiency of new buildings have become a cornerstone of US environmental policy. California enacted the first such codes in 1978 and has tightened them every few years since. I evaluate the resulting energy savings three ways: comparing energy used by houses constructed under different standards, controlling for building and occupant characteristics; examining how energy use varies with outdoor temperatures; and comparing energy used by houses of different vintages in California to that same difference in other states. All three approaches yield estimated energy savings significantly short of those projected when the regulations were enacted.

JEL-codes: Q48 Q51 Q52 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2016
Note: DOI: 10.1257/aer.20150102
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