Air conditioning versus heating: climate control is more energy demanding in Minneapolis than in Miami(5 page pdf, Michael Sivak, Environ. Res. Letters, Mar. 27, 2013)
Also discussed here : Cold Cities Less Sustainable Than Warm Cities, Research Suggests(Science News, Mar. 26, 2013)
And here: Hot cities more sustainable than cold ones, study says(Science on NBC news, John Roach, Mar. 27, 2013)
The issue reviewed today concerns the differing challenges of heating and cooling buildings in warmer and colder climates and what this might imply with rising temperatures as a result of climate change. Results indicate that it takes more energy to heat a room than to cool it, due to the technologically superior efficiency of air conditioners vs furnaces. This, in turn, points to a positive trend in sustainable energy terms for cities in cold climates, such as Ottawa (the second coldest capital city in the world to Ulan Bator, capital of Mongolia), as long as the relative warming and cooling efficiencies remain the same. That noted, the research did not consider the energy efficiency of geothermal heating which offers emission free heating along with a small energy cost for electricity to power the circulation of the heated air.
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