Saturday, July 26, 2008

US electricity production – 1996-2006 comparison

Electricity production in US is currently very hot subject because of rumors about building new nuclear reactors for electricity production. In this article you can read about electricity generation by energy source - Summary Statistics for the United States. Though accounting for only 5 percent of the world's population, Americans consume 26 percent of the world's energy.


"1996"

"2006"

Increase 1996-2006


GWh

%

GWh

%

%

Coal

1,795,196

52.1

1,990,926

48.9

10.9

Petroleum

81,411

2.4

64,364

1.6

-20.9

Natural Gas

455,056

13.2

813,044

20.0

78.7

Other Gases

14,356

0.4

16,060

0.4

11.9

Nuclear

674,729

19.6

787,219

19.4

16.7

Hydroelectric Conventional

347,162

10.1

289,246

7.1

-16.7

Other Renewable

75,796

2.2

96,423

2.4

27.2

Pumped Storage

-3,088

-0.1

-6,558

-0.2

112.4

Other

3,571

0.1

13,977

0.3

291.4

Total:

3,444,189

100.0

4,064,701

100.0

18.0



This table shows amount of generated electricity by used energy source in the year 2006 and comparison to year 1996. Total electricity production in this ten-year period has increased by 18.02 percent. One GWh is one million kilowatthours or 1x109 watthours.

Coal is still main fuel for electricity production in US. Coal percentage in year 2006 has decreased for more than three percent compared to the year 1996, but overall electricity production from coal has increased for almost 11 percent, despite global warming and pollution problems.

Usage of natural gas is increasing very rapidly in this ten-year period – for more than 78%. Main reasons are facts that natural gas is cheap and reasonably clean energy source compared to other fossil fuels. Result of this rapid grow is increased overall natural gas produced electricity percentage from 13 to 20%.

Nuclear energy share is very stable in this period and nuclear energy production has been increased for almost 17% (overall energy production has been increased for 18%). Electricity production from hydropower has been decreased for more than 16% by volume resulting in three percent decrease in overall energy production – to only seven percent in 2006.

Share of renewable energy sources has increased, but overall picture is that renewable energies are still minor energy sources in electricity production.

Coal power plant. Coal is still dominant energy source for electricity production in US. Click on picture for full size.

5 comments:

ThePete said...

you note that the US uses 25% of the world's energy but accounts for 5% of the world's population... this is not a good measure of world energy use (per person) because much of the energy is used in production or transportation. Do you have for us the percentage of technology/innovation/R&D the US produces compaired to the rest of the world?

Anonymous said...

thepete:

I don't know what the "percentage of technology/innovation/R&D the US produces compaired to the rest of the world" but I know the US have about 5% of the world population, 25% of the wealth and 25% of the polution, and ... 50% of lawyers.

(True fact, give or take a few percent).

Anonymous said...

Both of your arguements would be more valid if either of you knew how to spell correctly!

Storm Bunny said...

May I inquire which is your source for this info and whether you have it updated to 2008?

Davor Habjanec said...

I do not remember exactly, but I think that most of the data is from EIA page http://www.eia.doe.gov/emeu/aer/elect.html.