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Energy Intensity and Electricity Consumption in Tennessee
J. Scott Holladay, UT professor of Economics and Baker Fellow in Energy & Environment and Rebecca J. Davis, Graduate Research Assistant in Economics research how the state of Tennessee’s electricity consumption grew steadily for decades as the state’s population and economy grew, but electricity consumption has now leveled off. While the state’s population and economy have continued to grow, electricity demand has been flat since the onset of the Great Recession in 2007. In this policy brief they argue that Tennessee’s economy has entered a new era of reduced electricity intensity. They define electricity intensity as electricity demand per person or dollar of economic activity. They argue that falling electricity intensity is driven largely by increased energy efficiency. Increases in efficiency across industrial, commercial and household sectors have arrested the growth in electricity consumption. For the first time, electricity consumption has been decoupled from economic and population growth.