And guess what we're buying less of?

Plasma and LCD TVs, electric heaters and electric hot water systems.

Ongoing and independent research of Queensland households has given Queensland's electricity distributors Ergon, Powerlink and Energex a valuable insight into energy use, appliance penetration and saturation, and energy efficient behaviours.

And the latest research for 2013 hasn't disappointed.

Being the fifth consecutive year of research means we're getting a clearer view of the changing attitudes towards being energy efficient.

Interestingly, overall energy usage is falling as more Queenslanders choose to install solar PV or look to buy 'star rated' appliances.    We're getting a good picture of what's trending up and down because some of the latest survey results can be compared with previous findings.

Take for instance the Solar PV issue. Our research has found that householders with solar PV installed are more likely to use less power and show more energy efficient behaviour.  Solar PV owners also generally are more aware of battery storage but the cost of the technology is holding things back at the moment. From this research we know that a price drop in storage technology (among other things) will likely see a swift take-up of batteries. That's something for the industry to be aware of.

The survey did reveal some surprises too. It's somewhat concerning to see that households overall are claiming to exercise less energy efficient behaviours than in previous years. There are less of us choosing to hang the clothes out and are turning to the dryer, less are turning off the second fridge, and fewer turning off the air conditioning when leaving a room.

Getting such a good understanding of just how Queensland Households use and feel about energy is at the core of what Ergon's Customer Insights team does. It is valuable data which helps distributors with both future planning, and managing energy use now - such as peak demand.

You are welcome to read the full summary of the 2013 research (PDF 814.6 kb) or access previous research reports on our research partner's website.