Ohio Residential Energy Usage

I decided to estimate the energy used by the typical Ohio family. There are many estimates of typical energy use, but there are problematical for two reasons:

1. Many estimates use per capita energy, which includes items families have no control over, such as industrial usage.

2. Energy usage depends heavily on climate because of the demands of heating and cooling. I wanted to make an Ohio specific estimate.

The results are given in the table below, with references for the reader to translate the results to other states. The table has two clear points:

1. Cars use over a third of the household energy and half of the cost.

2. Electricity is the major cost within the house because natural gas is relatively cheap

Estimated Energy Usage and Cost for Ohio Households

Technology                     Energy                                 Monthly

kWh/yr               %                 Cost, $                     %


Car (1)                          19,000             37                    154                       49

House Gas (2)              21,000             41                      53                       17

House, electric (3)       11,000             22                     105                       34

House Total                 32,000             63                     158                       51

Grand Total                 51,000           100                     312                      100

Notes: Car data are national averages; house data are Ohio averages. To compare house and car, I have calculated the energy content of gasoline and natural gas..


(1) Data from the Center for Transportation Analysis; http://cta.ornl.gov/data/chapter4.shtml.
Conversion of gallons to kWh from U. of WA; http://www.ocean.washington.edu/courses/envir215/energynumbers.pdf:
Assumed gasoline price is $3.50/gal.

(2) Consumption from EIA, http://www.eia.gov/dnav/ng/ng_cons_sum_dcu_SOH_a.htm; number of households from Census Bureau, http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/00000.html, conversion of ccf to kWh from DJC McKay “Sustainable Energy without the Hot Air”, (2009) p. 334 ; price from EIA,

(3) Data from EIA http://www.eia.gov/state/data.cfm?sid=OH#ConsumptionExpenditures & http://www.eia.gov/state/data.cfm?sid=OH#ConsumptionExpenditures


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s