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Manufacturing Energy Consumption Survey (MECS)

Energy In Brief

What are the major sources and users of energy in the United States?

The major energy sources in the United States are petroleum (oil), natural gas, coal, nuclear, and renewable energy. The major users are residential and commercial buildings, industry, transportation, and electric power generators. The pattern of fuel use varies widely by sector.

How can we compare or add up our energy consumption?

To compare or aggregate energy consumption across different energy sources like oil, natural gas, and electricity, we must use a common unit of measure. This is similar to calculating your food energy intake by adding up the calories in whatever you eat.

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Industry Analysis Briefs

Steel Industry Analysis

The steel industry is critical to the U.S. economy. Steel is the material of choice for many elements of construction, transportation, manufacturing, and a variety of consumer products. It is the backbone of bridges, skyscrapers, railroads, automobiles, and appliances. Most grades of steel used today - particularly high-strength steels that are lighter and more versatile - were not available a decade ago.

Chemical Industry Analysis

The chemical industries are a cornerstone of the U.S. economy, converting raw materials such as oil, natural gas, air, water, metals, and minerals into thousands of various products. Chemicals are key materials for producing an extensive assortment of consumer goods.


bar chartCost of Natural Gas Used in Manufacturing Sector Has Fallen

Release Date: September 6, 2013

Natural gas has been an important exception to the trend of rising prices for energy sources used by manufacturers. Production of natural gas in the United States increased rapidly beginning in 2007 as a result of resources found in shale formations. That increase in supply has in turn lowered the price of natural gas to manufacturers as well as other consumers.

bar chartManufacturing energy consumption data show large reductions in both manufacturing energy use and the energy intensity of manufacturing activity between 2002 and 2010

Release Date: March 19, 2013

Total energy consumption in the manufacturing sector decreased by 17 percent from 2002 to 2010 (Figure 1), according to new 2010 MECS data.

bar chartEarly-release estimates from the 2010 MECS show that energy consumption in the manufacturing sector decreased between 2006 and 2010

Release Date: March 28, 2012

Energy consumption in the U.S. manufacturing sector fell from 21,098 trillion Btu (tBtu) in 2006 to 19,062 tBtu in 2010, a decline of almost 10 percent, based on preliminary estimates released from the 2010 Manufacturing Energy Consumption Survey (MECS). This decline continues the downward trend in manufacturing energy use since the 1998 MECS report.