Luxury high-rise condos are guzzling electricity

  • Luxury high-rise condos are guzzling electricity

Luxury high-rise condos are guzzling electricity

"This is likely due to the addition of more luxurious amenities like heated pools, hot tubs, saunas, fitness centres and movie theatres", said BC Hydro.

BC Hydro says despite what you might think, residents of new high-end condos have a much larger energy footprint compared those in older buildings.

Luxury condos may be marketed as being energy-efficient but according to BC Hydro, that's far from the truth.

BC Hydro has found that even if you live in a higher end condo building, the amount of power your fancy building consumes may be more than you actually think.

Although high-end condos are marketed as being energy-efficient, BC Hydro said the combined electricity usage of the overall building is two times more than high rises built in the 1980s and use almost four times more electricity than low rise structures.

If the cost of exterior systems were to appear on a single tenant's electricity bill, it would nearly double the amount, raising the average bill from $43 to $80. "What we've found is these newer high-rises use about double the amount of electricity as buildings built in the 1980s".

The data also shows that the average building with five storeys or more built in 2010 uses just over 1 million kilowatt hours of electricity a year, which is more than four times the 235,000 kilowatt hours used by low-rise dwellings built in the 1980s. In fact, the average newly built high-rise building's electricity consumption has increased by 65 per cent.

But "High-powered high-rise" suggests energy consumption doesn't have to keep rising with the number of condo buildings in the province.

To mitigate power usage, BC Hydro recommends making changes like lighting upgrades, adding occupancy sensors, and using automated controls for HVAC systems.