Document 37: Robert M. Davis, "Looking Ahead Ten Years",  January 5, 1924 ELECTRICAL WORLD page 17


[Davis was the Statistical Editor of Electrical World]

Survey Made by the "Electrical World" Indicates Startling Growth in the Next Ten Years The Energy Generated Will Triple Gross Revenue Will More than Double
Customers Will Spend Billions of Dollars for Appliances
 


AMERICAN industry and the American family have adopted electrical energy as a source of light, heat and power with such enthusiasm that today the electric light and power industry stands out as one of the greatest economic factors of the nation. But the present use of electrical energy in this country dwindles into small proportions when a study is made of the probable future use of this great force of nature. It is estimated that in 1933 more than one hundred and twenty-five billion kilowatt-hours of electrical energy must be generated by the central generating plants of the country to meet the demands of customers for electrical service in the home, on the farm and in the mine and factory. To meet this demand the central-station generator rating must be increased by 32,418,000 kva., involving an expenditure of more than six billion dollars. And these figures are believed to be conservative.


Statistics of the past and, in fact, those showing the present status of the central-station industry are valuable mainly in their probable bearing on future development. It is the future, what it holds in store and what it will demand, that is of interest to the industry at large. With a view toward presenting as comprehensive a picture as possible of the developments which will probably take place in the industry during the next five-year and ten-year periods, the ELECTRICAL WORLD in the past year requested operating companies representing about 80 per cent of the installed generator
rating of the country to estimate the probable growth in the operations of their companies. The response exceeded all expectations. Some of the companies were already making their own individual studies, and others were spurred to action by this request. In all cases extra work was done by the companies, which realized the value of nation-wide totals of these figures, and large sums of money were undoubtedly spent in compiling the estimates.


Based upon this composite picture of growth an estimate has been made for the industry as a whole by sections of the country and for the various groups of items entering into central-station operations. An estimate has also been made of the value of electrical appliances and supplies which will be purchased by central-station customers. All these estimates will be found included in the accompanying tables.


It must be borne in mind that these figures do not include the additions and extensions to purely electric railway generating systems or to private or isolated generating plants. Nor do they include the value of purchases of electrical appliances and supplies which will be made by mines and factories using privately generated energy.

The composite picture of the industry's growth in the various sections of the country is undoubtedly based upon operating conditions as they exist at the present time or as they can with full confidence be definitely anticipated. Developments in interconnection, super-power plants .... [ seven more pages of text, 13 table and graphs]