Thirteen accomplishments worth celebrating in 2013:
New and improved products and services from EIA


Thirteen accomplishments worth celebrating in 2013

When it comes to new products and services, the U.S. Energy Information Administration has much to celebrate in 2013. Here, in no particular order, are some of the highlights of our year.

State Energy Portal

In April 2013, EIA launched the most comprehensive, dynamic, and interactive portal of the U.S. government's national and state energy data currently available. The state energy portal adds a powerful visual dimension to each state's energy resources and infrastructure while providing quick access to state energy data.

International Energy Outlook

EIA published its long-term assessment of global energy on July 25, 2013. Publication of the report was suspended in 2012, but was restored this year. It provides information about worldwide energy consumption and production by energy source for 16 regions of the world with projections that extend to 2040.

Completing field collection for the Commercial Buildings Energy Consumption Survey

In November, the Commercial Buildings Energy Consumption Survey (CBECS) team completed the largest active field collection in the history of CBECS. More than 200 trained interviewers visited about 7,000 commercial buildings to collect building characteristics and consumption data through in-person interviews. From April to November, interviewers visited many types of buildings ranging from fast food restaurants and schools, to shopping malls and skyscrapers.

U.S. Drilling Productivity Report

EIA spent almost a year researching and developing a new methodology to forecast drilling activity from six tight shale formations responsible for the recent dramatic increases in U.S. oil and gas production. In October, EIA issued the first Drilling Productivity Report. The detailed monthly report has received high praise from industry participants and analysts and should lead to a more accurate baseline for production estimates in many other of EIA’s reports.

Assessment of shale resources outside the United States

In June, EIA issued the report Technically Recoverable Shale Oil and Shale Gas Resources: An Assessment of 137 Shale Formations in 41 Countries Outside the United States. This work, taken in conjunction with EIA's own assessment of resources within the United States, indicates worldwide technically recoverable resources of 345 billion barrels of shale oil resources and 7,299 trillion cubic feet of shale gas resources.

Enhanced annual and monthly historical data for the Monthly Energy Review

EIA expanded the Monthly Energy Review (MER) to provide a comprehensive resource that contains more than 60 years of data on energy production, consumption, and prices. The expanded MER includes overviews of U.S. petroleum, natural gas, coal, electricity, nuclear energy, and renewable energy. The MER now incorporates annual data from as far back as 1949 for data series in about 70 key tables previously included in both the Annual Energy Review (AER) and the MER.

Creation of a consistent hydrocarbon gas liquids (HGL) definition

To eliminate confusion over key industry product definitions among natural gas liquids suppliers and petroleum gases consumers, EIA created a new framework for cataloging hydrocarbon gas liquids. The new terminology will enable more precise analyses and data collection, while also improving communication among stakeholders.

Interactive energy disruption map

EIA combined real-time data feeds from the National Hurricane Center with more than 44 map layers to launch a map mash-up that visualizes storm threats to energy infrastructure. This map allows industry, energy analysts, government decision makers, and the American public to better understand the potential impact of a storm. The Federal Geospatial Data Committee praised the map, stating that it highlights DOE’s commitment to "coordinate GIS efforts with its federal, state and private partners to reduce GIS costs, improve the quality of services, and increase efficiency to support the interagency emergency response community."

Electricity data browser

EIA’s interactive electricity data browser provides access to up to 10 years of current and historical annual or monthly electricity data using one simple system. The browser allows users to access vast amounts of data that include information about electricity generation, retail sales, average electricity prices, and the cost and quality of fossil fuels used to generate electricity.

Data application programming interface (API)

EIA added some additional clout to its data application programming interface (API) in 2013 by including State Energy Data System (SEDS), petroleum, and natural gas time-series data to the API. The API allows direct third-party computer access to EIA's public data and is ideal for software developers working in the government, research, or the energy sector who are looking to create web and mobile applications.

EIA data center

EIA led a strategic partnership with the Department of Energy's Office of Energy Efficiency Renewable Energy (EERE), Office of the Chief Information Officer, and Office of Management, to open a more energy efficient, state-of-the-art data center in DOE’s Forrestal building. The center, which results in more than $1.5 million in cost savings, was cited by the Office of Management and Budget as an example of federal enterprise architecture innovation and a government-wide best practice resulting in substantial operational benefits, greater effectiveness, transparency, and increased collaboration in meeting the DOE mission.

2013 Energy Conference

EIA set attendance records at its annual energy conference on June 17 and 18 when more than 900 thought leaders from industry, government, and academia turned out to participate in working sessions, view exhibits, and learn from a diverse range of high-level keynote and session speakers. The Washington, DC event featured presentations from Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz, Senator Lisa Murkowski, International Energy Forum Secretary General Aldo Flores-Quiroga, Gapminder Foundation Chair Hans Rosling, and Southern Company President and CEO Tom Fanning.

Awards and community service

EIA experienced a truly rewarding year. In addition to organizing the highly successful second annual Boy and Girl Scout Merit Badge/Patch Day, EIA also accepted several awards recognizing its innovative work. This year, EIA accepted the Center for Plain Language’s ClearMark award for best public sector original document for EIA’s Writing Style Guide. EIA took first place honors in the Blue Pencil & Gold Screen Awards for electronic publication (Today in Energy) and web article (Access to alternative transportation fuel stations varies across the lower 48 states) in addition to receiving a second place award for special event (scout merit badge/patch class). EIA also earned the Energy Standard of Excellence award in the Web Marketing Association’s 17th annual WebAward Competition for website development for EIA’s state energy portal.