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UK Energy Consumption - Energy Intensity Falls in 2009

Released: 29 June 2011 Download PDF

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Energy Consumption and Gross Domestic Product

Energy Consumption, Gross Domestic Product and Energy Intensity, Environmental Accounts 2011

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Energy intensity

Energy intensity - the amount of energy consumed per unit of output – by UK companies and the public sector decreased by 2.9 per cent in 2009, compared with 2008. Energy consumption fell by 6.9 per cent and output fell by 4.9 per cent during this period. Overall, energy intensity fell by 35.1 per cent between 1990 and 2009, while Gross Domestic Product rose by 45.8 per cent in real terms during this period.

Energy consumption

The UK consumed 210.8 million tonnes of oil equivalent (mtoes) of energy in 2009 - the lowest since 1990 - 15.6 mtoes (6.9 per cent) lower than in 2008. The UK total energy consumption (including household) fell as:

  • the total use of energy from fossil fuels decreased by 8.7 per cent to 194.1 mtoes

However, this was partly offset as:

  • the use of energy from other sources – nuclear power, hydro electric power, and imports of electricity – increased by 20.2 per cent to 16.7 mtoes   

Fossil fuel

Energy consumption from fossil fuel by UK companies and the public sector decreased by 10.2 per cent to 139.1 mtoes in 2009, the lowest consumption since 1990. It was mainly due to a fall in energy consumption by electricity, gas and water industries; manufacturing industry; and transport and communication industries. Energy consumption from fossil fuels by the household sector decreased by 4.5 per cent to 55.0 mtoes - 28.3 per cent of total energy use from fossil fuel - in 2009.

Other sources

Energy consumption from non-carbon sources increased by 2.8 mtoes to 16.7 mtoes - 7.9 per cent of energy used by the whole economy - in 2009.  The use of energy from non-carbon sources was the highest since 2006; however, it was 8.3 mtoes lower than in 1998.

Source: Office for National Statistics

Background notes

  1. Gross Domestic Product: Chained volume measure – seasonally adjusted.

  2. Energy from other sources is allocated to non-household sector.
  3. The unit of measurement used in this analysis is tonne of oil equivalent (toe), which enables different fuels to be compared and aggregated. It should be regarded as a measure of energy content rather than a physical quantity. Standard conversion factors for each type of fuel are given in the Digest of UK Energy Statistics (DUKES).
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    These National Statistics are produced to high professional standards and released according to the arrangements approved by the UK Statistics Authority.

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