After seeing this graph, you’ll never look at your refrigerator the same way again

Todd Moss, vice president and senior fellow at the Center for Global Development, recently bought a new refrigerator. It's one of the nice new refrigerators. The super-energy efficient refrigerators. The ones that come with a little yellow tag bragging about how little energy they use each year. But Moss, who's got a more global view than most, knows "energy efficient" means very different things on different continents.

"I know I live an energy-intensive lifestyle," he writes. "Americans on average use 13,395 kWh/year (IEA data for 2010), which is nearly three times what the typical South African uses and 100 times the average Nigerian.  But I was still pretty shocked to see how my new single-family fridge compares with an average citizen in the six Power Africa countries."

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Neil Irwin · September 18, 2013