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Will AC put a chill on the global energy supply?

In: American scientist. Vol. 101, no. 5 (Sept./Oct. 2013), p. 330

Authors: Michael Sivak

The United States currently uses more energy for air- conditioning than all other countries combined—a sobering statistic from Stan Cox of the Land Institute in Salina, Kansas. That distinction might not remain true for long, however. Several developing countries rank among both the most populous and hottest areas in the world. As personal incomes rise in those countries, their use of air-conditioning will also likely go up, which in turn could lead to an unprecedented increase in energy demand. I have estimated that in metropolitan Mumbai alone, the large population and hot climate combine to create a potential energy demand for cooling that is about a quarter of the current demand of the entire United States.