Just as we discussed in the last blog, the interactive graph is a useful

tool which visually demonstrates the development of over 100 countries in

different statistical categories from 1980 to 2006. In addition, you can

see the visual correlation between different categories.

For example, remember that by examining the behaviors of China, India,

Uganda, and the U.S., we determined that there is a positive relation

between the average base power consumed per household, given in Watts per

capita, and how ‘developed’ a nation is. If we want to see what

potential factors contribute to higher average base power consumption per

capita, we can easily do this using the graph. You place the main category

(in this case average base power consumption per capita) on the y-axis.

Then, on the x-axis, you cycle through the different variables you believe

has an impact on the main category. If the data set of a country over time

fits a positive regression model, then the variable is a potential

contributing factor to the main category.

In the case of average base power consumption per capita, using the method

above we can see that electricity generation, GDP, and HDI are all factors

which contribute to increased power consumption per household. Conversely,

other categories do not have such a strong linear or log-log relationship

when graphed. Take, for example, the total average base power consumed.

This is the approximate number of power plants at 200 MW needed to meet

this base power. If you compare it to a country’s population, the

regression model has a much weaker correlation compared to other

statistical categories. While correlation doesn’t necessarily imply

causation, from results such as this we can infer that it isn’t factors

like a country’s size, but rather factors like as electricity generation,

HDI and GDP that mainly dictate its power consumption.

It was from such data that our research team developed what we think is the

best way to combat poverty in so-called ‘developing’ nations such as

Uganda. If you have not read the December 2010 Science Policy Forum article

called Energy-Poverty-Climate Nexus, we highly recommend reading it. All of

our electricity generating devices are not only connected to poverty, but

also climate - we will talk more about the climate issue when we begin our

microgrid blogs. First, we will focus on poverty discussions.

## Tuesday, January 25, 2011

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