Bangaloreans contribute to city’s power crisis: survey

March 11th, 2009 - 6:57 pm ICT by IANS  

Bangalore, March 11 (IANS) While residents of India’s IT hub are crying foul about regular power outages, a survey has brought out Bangaloreans’ some “bad habits” when it comes to using and conserving electricity.
The survey by Biodiversity Conservation (India) Ltd (BCIL) has found that a majority of Bangaloreans are blissfully ignorant about the enormity of the problem at hand and are making minimal efforts to keep a tab on their power consumption.

The response of over 400 people surveyed showed “fifty percent of the respondents considered the ever increasing electricity bills to be a good enough reason for trying to conserve electricity, and as high as ninety percent takes power usage for granted,” the report titled BCIL Eco-Pulse said.

“A huge eighty percent (of those who feel that there is not enough power going around) would not pay a penny extra for power even if unlimited supply of electricity was guaranteed,” the report added.

The BCIL, a 13-year-old organisation which advocates and builds eco-friendly houses, justified the small sample surveyed to gauge the opinion.

“We have adopted a method covering a cross section of the population from various zones of the city to give a fair idea about the general habit of car owners in Bangalore,” BCIL CEO Chandrashekar Hariharan said, releasing the findings here Wednesday.

“The survey was aimed at understanding power consumption patterns and the attitude towards power conservation among Bangaloreans.

“Through the survey, we’re not trying to find a solution,” added Hariharan.

The survey was conducted over a period of six weeks and people between the ages of 21 and 50 from various zones in Bangalore, and whose monthly income was more than Rs.20,000 were covered in the survey, Hariharan said.

The city has a total population of 5,281,927 (according to 2001 census). Currently, Bangalore has been getting 27 million units of power everyday though the demand is for 32 million units.

Karnataka is facing a shortage of nine million units (mu) of power per day. While the present demand is 142 mu, the supply is only 133 mu. And the situation will likely worsen in the coming days, as the demand will go up in April and May.

While the Bangaloreans are experiencing two hours of unscheduled load-shedding in the morning and evening peak hours, rural Karnataka has no power for nearly 12 hours a day.

The survey brought out some alarming facts. Almost 45 percent of the households in Bangalore keep their television sets switched on for most of the day, even when no one is watching the programmes.

“Equally alarming is that more than fifty percent of respondents do not put off the main switch when the appliance is not in use,” stated the survey.

According to the survey, around fifty percent of Bangaloreans do not fill the washing machine up to the capacity while washing, resulting in extra wastage of electricity.

Around seventy percent of the people surveyed admitted that they keep their geysers, one of the major power guzzlers switched on almost two hours a day.

“The results are surprising, not just for the usage patterns that have been found out but even more for the clear lack of commitment to power conservation and the limited awareness surrounding power-related issues,” lamented Hariharan.

The study also brought to light some positive signs about Bangaloreans. Around 75 percent of the population in city uses CFL, the low energy consumption bulbs.

“Sixty percent of the respondents have said that they would inform Bangalore Electricity Supply Company Limited (BESCOM), if they find streetlights switched on during day time,” stated the survey.

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