NEW YORK — The technology to control air conditioning at homes is saving money, saving energy and lowering greenhouse gas emissions, according to a report from the American Society of Civil Engineers.
The report, which was released Wednesday by the association’s Institute of Building Engineering and Construction, found the use of thermostatic controls saves on heating and cooling costs by 15 to 25 percent.
“Thermostatic air conditioning has proven itself as a significant cost-effective technology for residential air conditioning systems, providing both reduced energy costs and reduced greenhouse gas emission,” said David R. G. Smith, executive vice president and chief executive officer of the ASAIC.
“While thermostatics have proven themselves to be an efficient and cost-competitive energy-saving technology, we must ensure that they do not become a costly source of energy in the future.”
The ASAIC report found that residential air conditioners account for about one-third of the energy needed in a home and account for more than one-fifth of greenhouse gas pollution.
In the past decade, thermostatically controlled homes have gained in popularity, and the cost of heating and ventilating them has dropped significantly, with thermostat controls accounting for about 10 percent of home heating costs.
But the ASAI said thermostats that use energy from the outside air have become increasingly popular in recent years and are now on average more than twice as expensive as traditional air conditioner controls.
Thermostat control is not available in all areas of the country, the report said, noting that a thermostati control in Chicago costs $10,800, while in New York City it costs $27,200.
It also said that in some areas of Canada, Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom, France and Sweden, thertopat controls have become more expensive, but still are a significant source of savings.
A number of new technologies have been developed to help control air conditioning in homes, including LED lighting, energy-efficient light fixtures and thermostated air conditioning pumps.
Other innovations include electric fans and energy-management systems, which allow homeowners to control thermostatis by using electronic devices, such as a smart thermostAT, a computer or smartphone.
These technologies are expected to increase in popularity and use in the next few years, with a variety of technologies on the market expected to have applications in many parts of the U.S. in the coming years.
Last year, a research report from MIT and the University of Arizona showed that thermostate control at homes costs roughly twice as much as it does at a conventional home.