Electricity Use Drops In U.S. For 3rd Year In A Row

According to the U.S. Energy Department, the drop is because big household appliances are more efficient than ever. The department also predicts home electricity use will continue to fall in 2014.

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DAVID GREENE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with backing off the power.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

GREENE: Though our lives are more gadget filled than ever, home electricity use fell in the United States for the third year in a row. It's now at its lowest level since 2001.

According to the U.S. Energy Department, this is because big household appliances are more efficient than ever before. New federal energy standards have the typical window air conditioner using 20 percent less power than they did 12 years ago. Fridges, dishwashers and washing machine are also more efficient.

The Energy Department also predicts that home electricity use will continue to fall in 2014, a bit of good news for our planet and for our pocketbooks.

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