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Today in Energy

July 1, 2011

Natural gas consumption has two peaks each year

graphs of Natural gas consumption has two peaks each year, as described in the article text
Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration, Natural Gas Monthly
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Consumption of natural gas is seasonal, with consumption patterns among end-use sectors highly driven by weather. Total natural gas consumption peaks during the winter, when cold weather increases demand for natural gas heating. A second, smaller peak occurs during the summer, when electricity generation using natural gas increases to serve summer air-conditioning load.

Residential and commercial demand for heating accounts for over 50% of the natural gas delivered for end-uses in the United States during the winter. During the summer, total consumption of natural gas is, on average, about 30% lower than in the winter, with about half the gas used to generate electricity for air-conditioning.

In contrast to these seasonal patterns, natural gas demand in the industrial sector is more even throughout the year, although it has varied from about 20% to 40% of total consumption over the past six years.


graph of Share of total natural gas consumption by sector, as described in the article text
Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration, Natural Gas Monthly
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