Where it comes from, where it goes

Petroleum, coal and natural gas combined to provide more than 83 percent of the energy generated in the United States in 2008, as the flow chart below illustrates. Meanwhile, three of the most talked-about renewable energy sources – wind, solar and biomass – combined to create just 12.4 percent of all generated energy. While more than 40 percent of all generated energy powered homes, businesses, factories, and our planes, trains and automobiles, 57 percent of it was rejected – or wasted as emissions or exhaust.

Illustration: James Provost
Source: Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Department of Energy

 

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Comments

  1. Dan Kruvand says

    Informative graphical presentation on pg 9, but I believe there is an error in the percentage of power generated by Wind in the US. If the coal graphic on the next page is correct, appears that the decimal is off, ie, the % contribution for wind power should be 0.845%, not 8.45%.
    Really enjoyed the series of articles in this edition. Hope you continue to feature important engineering topics in the future!

  2. This is a great visual to highlight the real energy problem – Efficiency!