Bob Higgins <> wrote:

It seems to me that another factor in the decline has been the decline in
> manufacturing in the USA.

U.S. manufacturing is at record highs. Manufacturing employment is down,
and the U.S. fraction of world manufacturing is down, but in absolute terms
it is higher than it has ever been. It is even higher when you include
things like mining and agriculture. Manufacturing energy use is down, along
with all other sectors such as residential. This is because of improved
efficiency. See:


Natural gas is by far the most used fuel in manufacturing. See Fig. 2
(click to enlarge it):

Electricity and net electricity (including co-gen) have not changed as a
percent of the total, but like all sources they have fallen.

> . . . but in the USA the manufacturing has been slowly and consistently
> trickling to the far east for many years, gradually reducing the electrical
> demand.

No, it has not trickled anywhere. As I said, and as these graphs show, it
is at record highs. It would be higher still if some of it had not gone to
China. None has gone to Japan in recent decades. That is to say, no more
than was there in 1980. On the contrary, more Japanese companies now
manufacture in the U.S.

Total primary energy consumption is down.

Coal has fallen off a cliff. Other sources are down except renewables and
natural gas. The Trump administration is working overtime to reverse these
trends, mainly by curtailing efficiency, especially in transportation, and
by trying to subsidize coal. That plan fell through, for now. See:

After President Donald Trump promised to bring back “beautiful” coal power
plants, a group of his appointees ruled against the idea Monday on the
grounds that subsidies that would favor struggling plants would interfere
in energy markets.

Trump appointed four of the five officials that sit on the Federal Energy
Regulatory Commission who rejected the plan Secretary of Energy Rick Perry
submitted in September, arguing it would discriminate against producers of
other sources of energy. . . .

Wind and natural gas employ far more people than the coal industry, so I
cannot understand why the administration is so anxious to promote coal at
the expense of these other sources, but it is. It is "at the expense" of
other sources because net energy use will continue to decline inexorably,
despite Trumps efforts to gut efficiency standards and stop efficiency R&D.
If the U.S. does not make more efficient cars and refrigerators, others
countries will.

The administration's plan to gut the Energy Star program has run into
problems. A thousand manufacturing corporations protested.

"Trump's plan for Energy Star sparks industry uproar"

- Jed

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