The DOE Annual Energy Report for the USA is here!

Not as sexy as ‘Le Beaujolais nouveau est arrivé‘, but it’s still like Christmas at present opening time! Hooray!

I will be doing a series of posts on this report, which you might view as sort of a warm-up for the release of the International Energy Outlook expected later this spring.

One of those posts will deal with some significant changes in methodology and assumptions, which I suspect will make it difficult to compare this report with earlier versions. They include a projected drastic drop in American population totals, drastic drops in estimated vehicle miles traveled, and much more.

The headline is that they expect American energy consumption to be even lower than their previous estimate for 2040, dropping by one quad from 107 to 106 quadrillion BTUs in 25 years. They show 2014 consumption (still a projection) as 96.64 quads.

US Energy Consumption through 2040

One inconsistency with that is their estimates for electricity-related losses climb from 26.16 quads to 29.43 quads. Unless all our infrastructure is expected to degrade and become a lot less efficient, this climb would imply that the U.S.will be generating about 10 more quads of electricity…

Probably the figure that will shock the most is their projection that use of motor gasoline will drop from 16.04 quads in 2014 to 12.09 quads by 2040. They really expect that to happen at the same time as the economy grows from $14.232 trillion to $26.670 trillion? While population grows from 317 million to 380.5 million people?

Well, okay… lots to work with, it seems!

5 responses to “The DOE Annual Energy Report for the USA is here!

  1. Maybe they assumed a 20 to 25 % reduction in per capita transport energy, and much higher utilization of plug in hybrids? If gasoline prices skyrocket by 2030 (as I think they will), this may be a very reasonable outcome.

  2. Hiya Fernando! Well, if per capita income tracks the doubling of GDP (well… it might…) we’ll all be able to afford gas even if it hits European levels!

  3. thomas if you mean gasoline it only requires putting the vehicle fleet on a diet. If you mean natural gas, I’m afraid Americans need to learn to live in much smaller dwellings. I live in a nice area and we seldom see any housing larger than 2000 square feet. The typical area is probably about 1400 square feet.

  4. Pingback: In The Huddle | The Lukewarmer's Way

  5. Interesting assumptions by the EIA. I wonder how much the climate obsession is influencing their work. As to gasoline usage, my bet is that with hybrids, battery power and natural gas fueled vehicles this may actually be a realistic projection.

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