Americans used more solar, nuclear, biomass and wind energy in 2008 than they did in 2007, according to the most recent energy flow charts released by the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.
Estimated U.S. Energy use dipped in 2008 to 99.2 quads (quadrillion BTUs), down from 101.2 quads in 2007. Energy flow charts show the relative size of primary energy resources and end uses in the United States, with fuels compared on a common energy unit basis. The amount of energy in one quad is equivalent to that produced by the burning of 36,000,000 tonnes of coal.
Energy use in the industrial and transportation sectors declined by 1.17 and 0.9 quads respectively, while commercial and residential use slightly climbed. The drop in transportation and industrial use — which are both heavily dependent on petroleum — can be attributed to a spike in oil prices in summer 2008.
Energy Flow Charts via U.S. Dept. of Energy: Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
Tim is the founder of ecopolitology and the executive editor at LiveOAK Media where he writes regularly about the politics of energy and the environment, green business and clean tech. When not reading, writing, thinking or talking about environmental politics with anyone who will listen, Tim spends his time skiing in Colorado's high country, hiking with his dog, and getting dirty in his vegetable garden.