ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Based on new research, the North American Insulation Manufacturers Association (NAIMA) estimates that roughly 90 percent of existing U.S. homes are under-insulated, wasting HVAC energy use, money, and decreasing comfort for homeowners. This estimate is derived from information in the 2009 Residential Energy Consumption Survey, using methods to estimate insulation levels developed by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and applied by Boston University researchers as part of a study supported by NAIMA into the energy savings and emissions reductions possible with increased insulation levels in U.S. homes.
“If all U.S. homes were fitted with insulation based on the 2012 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC), residential electricity use nationwide would drop by about 5 percent and natural gas use by more than 10 percent,” said Dr. Jonathan Levy, professor of environmental health at Boston University School of Public Health and lead researcher on the Boston University team that investigated the subject. The study focuses on how increased insulation across the U.S. housing sector can decrease energy use as well as cut carbon dioxide and other pollutants. It will also provide estimates of the resulting public health benefits. These estimates will be developed and provided through a forthcoming series of peer-reviewed articles.