Work-from-Home, Electricity, and Water: Evidence from Qatar
35 Pages Posted: 15 Dec 2022
Date Written: December 7, 2022
Working from home will be key to mitigating harms from future pandemics and has also been proposed as a way to curtail emissions from commuting. This paper exploits a work-from-home order in Qatar to investigate the impacts of working from home on both electricity and water usage. We deploy quantile methods to analyze the distribution of consumption before and during the COVID-19 pandemic, and find evidence that use was shifted from work to home for both electricity and water. For residential use, increases are largest in percentage terms for the lowest deciles of both the electricity and water distributions. For commercial use, reductions are largest in percentage terms for the lowest deciles of both distributions. Our results have implications for which types of customers policymakers might want to target for governmental aid in future pandemics.
Keywords: COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, work-from-home, energy, and water
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