People in the province who live in high-end condos are consuming much more energy than those living in older condos, a BC Hydro report has found.
The utility’s research found that electricity use in condos has almost doubled since the 1980s, with the average increase between 1999–2009 being 65%.
It is thought the increase is due to the proliferation of amenities like hot tubs, heated pools, saunas, gyms and movie theatres.
The research also found that there has been a 22% increase in the number of condos and apartments since 2011.
Nearly 500,000 accounts registered with BC Hydro are apartments or condos.
Many of the newest developments, meanwhile, are high-rise blocks – which consume between three and four times more energy than low-rise buildings.
And despite the average electricity bill being about 50% lower in a condo than in a single-family home, BC Hydro said that that is not the full picture.
Newer buildings use about four times the power that low-rise buildings do.
If all the electricity used in a new condo were added to the average bill, it would double to about $83, BC Hydro said.
That would bring it close to the average single-family home’s bill of $103 a month.