Total energy consumption in the manufacturing sector decreased by 17 percent from 2002 to 2010, according to data released today by the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Manufacturing gross output decreased by only 3 percent during the same period. Taken together, these data indicate a significant decline in the amount of energy used per unit of gross manufacturing output. The decline in energy intensity reflects both improvements in energy efficiency and changes in the manufacturing output mix. Consumption of every fuel used for manufacturing declined over this period.
The broad U.S. manufacturing sector comprised over 11 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2010. It includes energy-intensive industries (those that use relatively large amounts of energy) such as petroleum refining, chemicals, aluminum, iron and steel, paper, wood products, and food, as well as less energy-intensive industries such as textiles, leather, apparel, furniture, machinery and electrical equipment.