Report: Don’t count fossil fuels out just yet | TribLIVE.com
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Report: Don’t count fossil fuels out just yet

Stephen Huba
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Dan Speicher | Tribune-Review
Miners walk under a huge American flag into the Acosta Deep Mine in Somerset County in June 2017.

Fossil fuels haven’t gone the way of the dinosaur just yet.

Although the fossil fuel share of total U.S. energy consumption increased slightly in 2018, it was the second-lowest share since 1902, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Overall energy consumption in the United States reached a record high in 2018 at 101 quadrillion British thermal units, of which more than 81 quadrillion Btu were from fossil fuels — petroleum, natural gas and coal, EIA said.

The increase in fossil fuel consumption in 2018 was driven mostly by increases in petroleum and natural gas consumption. Coal consumption fell by 4.3% in 2018, the fifth consecutive annual decline. U.S. consumption of coal peaked in 2005 and has declined nearly 42% since then.

Natural gas consumption increased in 2018, reaching a new record consumption level of 82.1 billion cubic feet per day, EIA said. Natural gas consumption has increased in eight of the past 10 years, driven largely by increased consumption in the electric power sector.

Petroleum consumption also increased in 2018 as supplies reached the equivalent of 20.5 million barrels per day, EIA said. Petroleum has been the largest source of energy consumption in the United States since surpassing coal in 1950.

Stephen Huba is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Stephen at 724-850-1280, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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