Which Sectors & Industries Use The Most Energy & Electricity

Some sectors, industries, and activities within an economy use more energy or electricity than others.

In this guide, we identify those sectors, industries and activities.

 

Summary – Sectors & Industries Use The Most Energy & Electricity

A Brief Description Of The Overall Sectors & Industries

The main sectors might commonly be divided into – industrial, transportation, residential and commercial

Industrial usually includes industries such as agriculture, mining, manufacturing and construction

Transport includes passenger transport of different types (road, rail, air, etc), but also freight and pipeline

Residential includes heating, lighting, appliances and devices inside homes

Commercial involves lighting, heating, cooling and services like water, waste inside commercial buildings

 

Energy Use In Different Sectors/Industries Differs Between Individual Countries

The specific sectors and industries that use the most electricity and energy can differ from country to country (even between developed countries, but, especially between developed and developing countries)

The makeup and stage of a country’s economy, as well as other factors like rate of industrialization and technological development, can play a role in this 

As one example, the economies of China and the United States have a slightly different makeup when it comes to production from the different industries/sectors, and this is reflected in their energy use breakdown.

In China in 2015, the industrial sector made up nearly 70% of all energy use, and there were six industries within the industrial sector that made up most of this energy use.

The US in 2017 had a more even split in terms of energy consumption between the industrial and transportation sectors at 32% and 29% respectively. The residential and commercial sectors rounded out the other sectors.

Read more about energy use in China in this guide, and energy use in the US in this guide

Outlining two other countries as examples of where they use the most energy … 

The UK by far used most of it’s energy in transportation, with domestic in second place

Australia uses most of it’s energy in electricity supply and transportation, with manufacturing a distant third

 

Energy Use In Different Sectors/Industries – Global Average

Separate to individual countries, there is a global average for energy use across the different sectors and industries.

Globally, in 2012, the industrial sector (composed of agriculture, mining, manufacturing, and construction) by far used the most energy in terms of % shar, at 54%.

This was followed by transportation, residential and then the commercial sector (in that order)

 

General Notes

Some industries depend indirectly other other industries – one example of this is how almost every industry depends on the electricity generation industry

Some industries can be further categorized or broken down into different parts of that industry. One good example of this is transportation. Transportation can be broken down into road, rail and air transport. But, even on the road for example, there’s different types of vehicles, with regular passenger cars and small trucks being two of the most common 

So, energy use can become very specific depending on how granular breakdowns are

 

Which Sectors & Industries Use The Most Energy & Electricity Globally?

According to wikipedia.org, global energy use in terms of % share, by sector, in 2012, was:

Industrial – 54%

Transportation – 26%

Residential – 13%

Commercial – 7%

Energy use can also be measured in petra watts or Btus (British thermal units)

 

The EIA also has some good data at EIA.gov on US and International energy consumption:

Browse ‘Energy Consumption By Sector’

There’s also an outlooks and forecasts section

There’s also an international section for other countries such as China, India, Russia etc.

 

Which Sectors & Industries Use The Most Energy & Electricity In China

In 2015, almost 70% of China’s energy use came from the industrial sector, and there’s 6 industries that make up most of that energy use in the industrial sector.

Read more about energy use in China in this guide

 

Which Sectors & Industries Use The Most Energy & Electricity In The United States

The US in 2017 had a more even split in terms of energy consumption between the industrial and transportation sectors at 32% and 29% respectively. The residential and commercial sectors rounded out the other sectors.

Read more about energy use in the US in this guide

 

Which Sectors & Industries Use The Most Energy & Electricity In The UK

In 2016, one set of data from gazprom-energy.co.uk had the following breakdown of energy consumption by sector in the UK:

Transport – 40%

Domestic – 29%

Industry – 17%

Services – 14%

 

The same gazprom-energy.co.uk resource has a good breakdown of energy use across the business related sectors and industries

Commercial and miscellaneous services by far uses the most energy, and public administration was in second place

Read the gazprom-energy.co.uk resource for a full business sectors energy breakdown, and also for a breakdown of the types of energy sources and fuels used

 

Which Sectors & Industries Use The Most Energy & Electricity In Australia

In 2015-15, Australia’s energy consumption by industry was:

Electricity Supply – 28.5 % of total energy consumption

Transport – 27.1%

Manufacturing – 18.4%

Mining – 10.1%

Residential – 7.5%

Commercial – 5.6%

Agriculture – 1.8%

Construction – 0.4%

Other – 0.7%

– energy.gov.au

 

Sources

1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_energy_consumption

2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Energy_policy_of_China

3. https://chinapower.csis.org/energy-footprint/

4. https://www.energy.gov.au/sites/g/files/net3411/f/energy-update-report-2017.pdf

5. https://www.gazprom-energy.co.uk/blog/which-businesses-use-the-most-energy/

6. https://www.eia.gov/outlooks

7. https://www.eia.gov/energyexplained/index.php?page=us_energy_use

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