‘Eco-house’ cut electricity purchases by 88% in year

Kyodo

Annual electricity costs at an experimental housing unit were cut 88 percent by using solar panels, a storage battery and a fuel cell, Osaka Gas Co. and Sekisui House Ltd. have reported.

From July 2011 to June 2012, the three-member household reduced its power costs to 584 kwh, from 4,830 kwh during the prior 12 months after their house was refitted with the panels, the firms said Thursday. Osaka Gas and Sekisui House aim to begin marketing the “eco-house” system by 2015, after lowering the equipment costs, particularly for the storage batteries, which cost around ¥10 million.

Automatic regulators to operate fans and power curtains also contributed to cost reduction by bringing cool air into the 138.8 sq.-meter house in the summer, and opening curtains during the day in winter to take advantage of the sunlight, the companies said.