For a long time, Japan has been suffering from the increasing energy consumption during the summer. The peak always took place in the early afternoon. The cause of the rise, was of course, the air conditioning system, the primary means to cool indoors during the wet and hot summer.
However, for a few years now, the peak has been decreasing. There are few explanations to this, like the government and the industry campaigns. But one of them is definitely the industry’s initiative, to set the air conditioning system’s default temperature to 28 degrees, which is relatively high for a cooling system here in Japan.
While it is interesting to find out that a small, non-technical solution can be found for a big problem, it is even more interesting that some behaviours that seem so irrelevant and harmless can cause a big problem. A video clip from BBC’s Britain From Above tells me that it can as well be a television that defines the peak. Power surges called TV pickup, is caused by the boiling of a water for tea taking place at the endtime of a drama like Eastenders. The pickup, according to the video clip, is equivalent of one-and-a-half million kettles boiling at the same time.
Although these are completely two different things, both Japan and Britain’s cases are about routines or unconscious habits and adjusting one. And what can be the solution? What happens if mobile TV becomes as popular as in Japan? Will people feel more comfortable to pour TV during the program? How about HDD recorders, will people start watching TV in a different hours? And it is just me to sense, that there I see another room for studying people’s behaviours?