THE PROBLEM AND ITS SETTING
It is almost impossible for people to function without the aid of electricity. With it, various sources of livelihood are created, delivery of services is improved which leads to the betterment of the lives of people. Given this, electricity can never be replaced and no matter how much the cost of electricity is consumers will never cease from using the same. In fact, electricity consumption kept on increasing every year all over the world. With the ballooning energy consumption rate, the US leads the pack: about 5% of world population consuming roughly 25% of world energy production, at a rate of over 11 KW/capita (Wikipedia, 2009). Another example is the two most populous countries, China and India, whose per capita energy consumption is rising rapidly from very low levels. Consequently, world energy demand is headed toward a catastrophically high level. As a matter of fact, if per capita energy usage in China and India were to approach half that of the US level, there is no way that the available resources for energy consumption could keep up (Unger, 2009). Here in the Philippines, there is also no denying that the state of the country’s power plants is already alarming and some of them are on their way to retirement. If the country does not invest on putting up new power plants with accompanying measures to conserve electricity, it is not farfetched that the country will again experience lingering and rotating power shortages just like in the early 1990s(CIA World Factbook, 2011). But what is more upsetting is the sobering picture of the world’s energy wasted due to inefficiencies despite the fact that the Philippines now has the most expensive electricity in Asia with an average retail rate of electricity of 18.1 US cents per KWh according to International Energy Consultants. As of the same month last year, electricity rate in Japan was at 17.9 US cents per KWh. For this year alone, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) World Factbook has assumed that the country’s electricity consumption will reach 54.4 billion KWh, based on 2009 estimates. Of this consumption, the residential sector consumed the biggest amount of electricity with an annual average electricity use of 16,734 GWh for the period under review, closely followed by the industrial sector (annual average of 16,546 GWh) mostly composed of the manufacturing, mining and construction, and then the commercial sector (annual average of 13,619 GWh). The rest of the country’s electric power consumption went to power losses and to the distribution utilities own use (NTRC Tax Research Journal, 2010). Among the three main users of electricity in the country, it is also assumed that the residential customers are the ones likely to practice wasteful and luxurious consumption of electricity especially those belonging to the middle and high income groups. It maybe that with the world moving fast, people, having heavy workloads and several tasks in their everyday lives, fail to remember each and every work in mind. Most forget to switch off the lights, fans and other electrical appliances at home. After getting into their workplaces, they will think about the house and worry until they return home. In light of this, it is important to introduce ways and means for residential electric consumers to become more responsible in the use of electricity to help lower electricity consumption at home. One approach is to increase the efficiency of energy consuming devices and systems. But perhaps, even more important, in terms of cost and potential savings, is to sharply reduce wasteful expenditures of energy. This can be done by developing a device that could provide residential electricity consumers a means of controlling lighting and outlets remotely. Statement of the Problem
This project design aims to introduce a means of reducing wasteful power usage. More specifically, this project aims to answer the following problems:...