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Just the Facts: Energy 10/08

Just the Facts: Energy

Offshore drilling, nuclear, solar, wind, ... These options will be heavily debated over the next 4 weeks as Americans prepare to elect the next president. Our energy policy affects not only our economic and environmental policies, but also our foreign policies. As we get ready to listen to and assess these discussions, let's look at some interesting statistics, summarized from the US Energy Information Administration (EIA).


Who are the biggest energy consumers and carbon dioxide emitters?

According to the EIA's International Energy Annual 2005 report (the latest published report), the US is the top energy consumer and carbon dioxide (CO2) emitter. The US accounted for 4.6% of world population, but over 21% of total energy consumption and CO2 emission. No wonder energy is such a big topic for both policy makers and environmentalists. China was in the distant second in both categories (though with a much lower per capita amount), but had a steep upward trend. Here is the summary for the top ranking countries.

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Legend:  greenies_1008_cht5


What about energy prices?

Even if we are not politicians or environmentalists, we are still being affected by the skyrocketing energy prices.

% Increase in Real Price
Type 1 Year 5 Years
Gasoline

25%

85%

Heating Oil

39%

170%

Diesel Fuel

32%

137%

Crude Oil

41%

251%

Data source: EIA

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Is renewable energy ready for prime time?

So with all these concerns, how many of us are turning to renewable energy? According to the EIA 2005 report, the world consumption of renewable energy was still low at about 7%. The US is moving closer to the worldwide pattern.

Type World 2005 US 2005 US 2007P
Fossil Fuel

86.3%

85.4%

84.9%

Nuclear

5.9%

8.1%

8.3%

Renewable

7.2%

6.4%

6.7%

Other

0.5%

0.1%

0.1%

P = prelimary

Find out more about related services in the Washington area:

Alternative Energy, Energy Saving Devices, Heating/HVAC Contractors, Transportation - Alternative

Related Reading:

Wind Energy; Carbon Neutral CitiesPeak Oil

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