A Global Degree Days Database for Energy-Related Applications

28 Pages Posted: 31 Mar 2015 Last revised: 2 Apr 2015

See all articles by Tarek Atalla

Tarek Atalla

Independent; King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center (KAPSARC)

Silvio Gualdi

CMCC - Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici; Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia (INGV)

Alessandro Lanza

Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM), Milan; CMCC - Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici; Bocconi University - IEFE Centre for Research on Energy and Environmental Economics and Policy

Date Written: March 27, 2015

Abstract

Weather can have a profound effect on energy consumption; especially extremes of hot and cold temperatures. These variations in particular drive residential and commercial energy demand because space heating and cooling is such an important component. Traditional approaches are customized to the specific geography of interest. Energy regulators use a measure of divergence from normal temperatures to estimate peaks in demand when planning future capacity, or to strip out short term weather effects to identify underlying growth trends. Energy traders marry weather forecasts to demand data to identify potential price peaks and troughs. What unites these analyses is that they tend to be either local or short term in nature; or both. However, the customization of methodology to a particular geography renders comparisons of the effects of weather between countries invalid.

Targets for improving energy productivity and benchmarking of performance towards meeting such targets between countries requires a consistent global database, both spatially and temporally. To date, no such database has been available to policymakers. KAPSARC has worked with the Euro-Mediterranean Center for Climate Change (CMCC) to create a database covering 147 countries over a period of several decades, based on consistent methodologies such that the impacts of local climate on energy consumption can be analyzed.

Differences in the energy productivity of countries are comprised of several factors. These include the industrial structure of the economy, efficiency of equipment and processes, availability of water and differences in weather, among other factors. Differentiating between the factors that are controllable (including economic structure and efficiency) and uncontrollable (including weather and access to water), allows policy to be focused in the areas that it can achieve the most beneficial impact. The CMCC-KAPSARC Weather Normalization Database is one of the tools now available to policymakers to separate the signal from the noise in guiding policies aimed at improving the energy productivity of their economies.

Keywords: Degree Days, Weather normalization, energy consumption

Suggested Citation

Atalla, Tarek and Gualdi, Silvio and Lanza, Alessandro, A Global Degree Days Database for Energy-Related Applications (March 27, 2015). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2586960 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2586960

Tarek Atalla (Contact Author)

Independent ( email )

No Address Available

King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center (KAPSARC) ( email )

Riyadh, Central Province
Saudi Arabia

Silvio Gualdi

CMCC - Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici ( email )

via Augusto Imperatore, 16
Lecce, I-73100
Italy

Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia (INGV) ( email )

viale Aldo Moro 44
Bologna, 40127
Italy

Alessandro Lanza

Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM), Milan

Corso Magenta 63
20123 Milan
Italy

CMCC - Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici ( email )

via Augusto Imperatore, 16
Bologna, I-73100
Italy

Bocconi University - IEFE Centre for Research on Energy and Environmental Economics and Policy ( email )

viale Filippetti, 9
Milan, 20122
Italy

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