Can India Afford to Cool Down?

The world’s fastest-growing market for air conditioners sparks a search for power-saving strategies that could help all developing countries.

Electricity consumption from air conditioning in India is expected to multiply 30 times from 2010 to 2030 if it isn’t made more efficient.

The 900 million residential air conditioners in the world today are expected to rise to between 2.5 billion and 3.7 billion room units by 2050. If little is done to improve efficiency, air conditioning will account for 40% of global growth in energy consumed in buildings by 2050—an amount of energy equivalent to all the electricity used today in the U.S. and Germany combined, according to the IEA.  [50m-87m per year, net increase]

Now EESL is working with companies such as Mahindra Automotive, which has ordered 1,100 of the super-high efficiency air conditioners to replace aging units in its offices. The company expects a 15%-30% energy savings over the next 18 months

It remains to be seen whether EESL can drive down the price of super-efficient air conditioners as far as it did with high-efficiency lighting. Unlike with light bulbs, ACs are considered a luxury item for the rich, one governments are wary of being seen as directly subsidizing. 

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