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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

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How much energy is consumed in U.S. buildings?

Energy consumption by the U.S. residential sector and the commercial sector represents the majority of energy consumption in or on all U.S. buildings.

In 2020, the combined end-use energy consumption by the residential and commercial sectors was about 20 quadrillion British thermal units (Btu).1 This was equal to about 29% of total U.S. end-use energy consumption in 2020. End-use energy consumption includes primary energy consumption and retail electricity sales, but excludes electrical system energy losses. Learn more about U.S. end-use energy consumption in U.S. energy consumption by source and sector.

Total energy consumption by the residential and commercial sectors includes end-use consumption and electrical system energy losses associated with retail electricity sales to the sectors. When electrical system energy losses are included, the residential and commercial sectors accounted for about 22% and 18% respectively—40% combined—of total U.S. energy consumption in 2020.2

The U.S. Energy Administration (EIA) collects detailed end-use energy consumption data for selected years in residential buildings, commercial buildings, and manufacturing facilities with energy consumption surveys (see links below). In the Manufacturing Energy Consumption Survey 2018, energy use in U.S. manufacturing facilities for facility air conditioning, heating, ventilation, lighting, and facility support, was about 0.5 quadrillion Btu, equal to about 2% of total U.S. end-use energy consumption in 2018.

1 Monthly Energy Review, Tables 2.2 and 2.3, April 2021, preliminary data for 2020.
2 Monthly Energy Review, Table 2.1, April 2021, preliminary data for 2020.

Learn more:
Residential Energy Consumption Survey (RECS)
Commercial Buildings Energy Consumption Survey (CBECS)
Manufacturing Energy Consumption Survey (MECS)

Last updated: May 3, 2021


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