EghtesadOnline: Buildings account for a significant share of energy waste (almost 50%) in Iran including households, commercial sectors, private companies and state organizations.
Close to 2.4% of the world's energy, equal to the energy produced by burning 3.6 million barrels of oil per day, is produced in Iran and 1.8% of the total energy is consumed.
Iran is among the most energy inefficient countries, with energy intensity three times higher than the global average and 2.5 times the Middle East average. Following countries like Russia and Saudi Arabia with energy intensity indices at 0.53% and 0.5% respectively, Iran is ranked third with 0.63%.
Energy intensity is a measure of energy efficiency calculated as units of energy per unit of gross domestic product. High energy intensity indicates a high price or cost of converting energy into GDP and vice versa, Financial Tribune reported.
"Iran's energy intensity was 0.8% in 2015, an equivalent to 6,000 barrels of oil," Hamed Houri Jaffari, an advisor to Iranian Fuel Conservation Organization told ISNA, adding that in the same period Japan, South Korea, China, Saudi Arabia and the UAE had intensities of 0.1% (0.733barrels), 0.2% (1.466 barrels), 0.27% (1.97 barrels), 0.4% (2.93 barrels) and 0.12% (0.87 barrels) respectively – markedly different compared to Iran and other states.
Household sector in Iran consumes equivalent of 1 million barrels of oil per day that is nearly eight times that of the most energy-efficient countries.
The volume of energy consumption and wastage is exceeding supply, Jaffari said, warning that Iran would turn into a major energy importer within a few years if the problem is not addressed soon.
Comparing energy consumption in different sectors with those of other countries, he said a large amount of energy is wasted in homes while the “large part of energy in developed countries is consumed by industries.”
According to energy expert on construction affairs Farzad Kiasat, the massive energy consumption is rooted in poorly insulated walls, windows, age-old heating and cooling systems and inefficient light bulbs. Every single evaporative cooler uses as much as 70 liters of water per day.
Moreover, abundance of subsidized energy is a key factor that has exacerbated the prohibitively high consumption and waste.
Kiasat says things cannot change for the better unless buildings are designed in a way that they are compatible with the climate and nature, especially in the hot southern regions and cold northern parts.
Iran consumed 2,873 tons of oil equivalent per capita in 2012, roughly the same as Italy with an economy over four times its size, according to World Bank estimates.
A report by the Iranian Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture says that according to International Energy Agency Iran tops the global list when it comes to subsidizing energy. The government paid $45 billion in direct and indirect energy subsidies in 2017, it said.