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The transportation sector consumed 71.4% of all petroleum in the United States in 2016. The industrial sector consumed 22.8% and the combined residential and commercial sectors consumed just 5.1%. The electric utility sector consumed the least petroleum accounting for less than 1%.

Within the transportation sector, cars and light trucks accounted for more than half (54.6%) of the petroleum consumption followed by heavy trucks at 21.2%. Together, these two highway modes totaled about three-fourths of transportation sector petroleum use. The other transportation modes – rail, water, pipeline, air, and off-highway, consumed the remainder.

Petroleum Consumption by Sector, 2016

Graphic showing petroleum consumption by sector (transportation, industrial, residential & commercial, and electric utility) in 2016

Notes: Petroleum consumption for pipelines was <0.1% of transportation consumption and does not appear on the figure. Light vehicles include motorcycles. Medium/heavy trucks include buses.


Shares by Sector – Energy Information Administration, Monthly Energy Review, August 2017, Tables 2.2 – 2.6

Shares by Mode of Transportation – Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Transportation Energy Data Book: Edition 35, October 2016, ORNL-6992, Table 1.16.

Fact #996 Dataset

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