Shift Toward Natural Gas Outweighs Shift Toward Renewable Energy Sources

While there has been a shift toward renewable energy sources over the last 10 years, there has also been an increase in usage of natural gas as an energy source. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, Michigan, California and New York all shifted away from oil and coal as sources for energy consumption and instead increased their usage of renewable energy sources. California and New York also increased their usage of natural gas as an energy source. The shift toward natural gas usage began in 2009 when the price gap between coal and natural gas production narrowed because of the increased supply of natural gas extracted from shale, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Another, secondary, reason the shift occurred on a national basis, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, is because the generation of coal-powered energy has been declining as a result of stricter regulations by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

In this post energy consumption and production between 2003 and 2013 is compared for Michigan, New York and California.

Between 2003 and 2013 New York’s consumption of coal as an energy source decreased the most of the three featured states by 217.5 trillion BTUs. This decrease was made up, and then some, by increased usage of natural gas (190.3 trillion BTUs-the highest of the three states) and renewable energy (50.9 trillion BTUs). Natural gas and renewable energy were the only two energy sources for which New York increased consumption of between 2003 and 2013. According to U.S. Census data, residents of the state of New York are increasingly relying on natural gas as a heat and electricity source. In the last 10 years that reliance on natural as a heating source has increased by about 500,000 households, according to Census data. New York also had the largest decrease in usage of oil between this time at 525.1 trillion BTUs.

In California natural gas consumption increased by 166.4 trillion BTUs between 2003 and 2013. According to the state, the increased consumption is, in part, being used as an alternative for petroleum in cars, trucks and buses as the use of alternative transportation options grow. Additionally, two-thirds of households in California use natural gas to heat their home, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

California experienced the largest increase of renewable energy usage between 2003 and 2013 at 103.8 trillion BTUs. This increase, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, can be attributed to the state’s policies that made it the first state in the country to receive 5 percent of its utility-scale electricity from solar power and partially because of its mandate to reduce green house gas emissions through various efforts.

Michigan experienced an increase of its usage of renewable energy by 98.9 trillion BTUs between 2003 and 2013. Like California, Michigan also passed a mandate for increased renewable energy usage. The Clean, Renewable, Energy Efficiency Act stated that by 2015 utility providers must obtain at least 10 percent of the energy they sell from renewable sources.

With Michigan’s increased usage of renewable energy sources, and a small amount of nuclear power, it experienced a decrease in coal, natural gas and oil consumption.

Of these three states though, Michigan was the only one to experience an increase in nuclear energy consumption (10.9 trillion BTUs) and a decrease in natural gas consumption. As can be seen in the production comparison chart, this is related how much of each energy source was produced in Michigan between 2003 and 2013. Although Michigan is consistently one of the top five states in the country to consume natural gas as an energy source, its production has been declining for the last 30 years, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

All three states also experienced a substantial overall decline in energy consumption from 2003 through 2013, probably because of conservation and the severe impacts of the Great Recession on the state and its industrial production.

Energy Consumption Change

Between 2003 and 2013 New York’s consumption of coal as an energy source decreased the most of the three featured states by 217.5 trillion BTUs. This decrease was made up, and then some, by increased usage of natural gas (190.3 trillion BTUs-the highest of the three states) and renewable energy (50.9 trillion BTUs). Natural gas and renewable energy were the only two energy sources for which New York increased consumption of between 2003 and 2013. According to U.S. Census data, residents of the state of New York are increasingly relying on natural gas as a heat and electricity source. In the last 10 years that reliance on natural as a heating source has increased by about 500,000 households, according to Census data. New York also had the largest decrease in usage of oil between this time at 525.1 trillion BTUs.

In California natural gas consumption increased by 166.4 trillion BTUs between 2003 and 2013. According to the state, the increased consumption is, in part, being used as an alternative for petroleum in cars, trucks and buses as the use of alternative transportation options grow. Additionally, two-thirds of households in California use natural gas to heat their home, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

California experienced the largest increase of renewable energy usage from 2003 and 2013 at 103.8 trillion BTUs. This increase, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, can be attributed to the state’s policies that made it the first state in the country to receive 5 percent of its utility-scale electricity from solar power partially because of its mandate to reduce green house gas emissions through various efforts.

Michigan experienced an increase of its usage of renewable energy by 98.9 trillion BTUs between 2003 and 2013. Like California, Michigan also passed a mandate for increased renewable energy usage. The Clean, Renewable, Energy Efficiency Act stated that by 2015 utility providers must obtain at least 10 percent of the energy they sell from renewable sources.

With Michigan’s increased usage of renewable energy sources, and a small amount of nuclear power, it experienced a decrease in coal, natural gas and oil consumption.

Of these three states though, Michigan was the only one to experience an increase in nuclear energy consumption (10.9 trillion BTUs) and a decrease in natural gas consumption. As can be seen in the production comparison chart, this is related to how much of each energy source was produced in Michigan between 2003 and 2013. Although Michigan is consistently one of the top five states in the country to consume natural gas as an energy source, its production has been declining for the last 30 years, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

All three states also experienced a substantial overall decline in energy consumption from 2003 through 2013, probably because of conservation and the severe impacts of the Great Recession on the states and its industrial production.

Energy Consumption Change

The below charts show the change in consumption and production of energy sources between 2003 and 2013.

In Michigan, we see there was a decrease in natural gas, oil and coal consumption between 2003 and 2013. At the same time, the amount of energy consumed through all three of these sources heavily outweighed the amount produced in both 2003 and 2013. The chart also shows how in 2003 oil was the most relied upon energy source (969.4 trillion BTUs) but in 2013 that shifted to natural gas (832.1 trillion BTUs of natural gas and 823.4 trillion BTUs of oil), despite the fact that natural gas consumption and production in the state is decreasing. The amount of which natural gas usage decreased between 2003 and 2013 was almost entirely replaced by the increased usage of renewable energy (118.6 decreased natural gas usage) and 103.8 trillion BTUs increased renewables, respectively). The decreased production of natural gas (119.5 trillion BTUs) was not entirely replaced by the production of renewable energy sources (75.7 trillion BTUs) though.

The consumption of renewable energy is increasing faster than the rate of production. As noted earlier though, wind produces ones of the largest amounts of renewable energy in Michigan (consumption of wind power energy is equivalent to the amount produced), and the number of wind farms in the state is expected to grow from 21 to 27, as six additional farms are in the process of being developed, according to the state of Michigan.

Production and consumption of nuclear energy in the state varied the least in the state between 2003 and 2013.

Energy by Source Production Change

Just as with Michigan, the chart below shows New York’s shift from oil to natural gas for consumption between 2003 and 2013. In 2003 1131.3 trillion BTUs of natural gas was consumed in New York and 1761 trillion BTUs of oil. By 2013 though, the natural gas used increased to 1321.6 trillion BTUs and, the amount of oil decreased to 1235.9 trillion BTUs.

For renewable energy, consumption increased from 359.3 trillion BTUs to 410.2 trillion BTUs. In 2003 in New York, oil, natural gas, nuclear and coal energy sources were all used more than renewable energy sources, despite the fact the amount of renewable energy sources produced in that year was higher than the amount of coal, natural gas and oil produced in the state. By 2013 coal use had declined substantially, while renewable production and use was increasing.

New York Energy Change

Although California’s consumption of oil decreased between 2003 and 2013, the state still used it more than any other source in 2013. In 2003, 3523 trillion BTUs of oil were consumed, while this declined to 3246.6 trillion BTUs by 2013. The shift toward increased use of natural gas and renewable energy sources can be seen, but those numbers still do not exceed oil consumption. The use and production of renewable energy sources in California has continuously outweighed that of coal and nuclear energy. But the increased use and production of renewable energy sources still falls short of the use and production of natural gas. Between 2003 and 2013 the use of natural gas increased by 166.4 trillion BTUs and the use of renewable energy increased by 103.8 trillion. Production of natural gas increased by 166.4 trillion BTUs and production of renewables increased by 42.9 trillion BTUs.

California Energy Change

In sum, the shift toward utilization and production of renewable energy sources is evident. With regulations on coal and oil growing stronger, and policies continuing to shift toward increased production and use of renewables, there is a definite move toward renewable energy. For now, however, the bigger move is that these states are substituting natural gas for oil and coal.

It is encouraging and fascinating, however, that there are substantial overall reductions in energy usage with New York clearly the leader.

 

 

Michigan Relies Heavily on Coal-Powered Energy

Of the 15 states featured in this energy series, only one state produced more energy than it consumed. In 2013, North Dakota produced 1,840.1 more trillion BTUs than it consumed. This surplus of energy is due to the state’s production of natural gas and oil. These instances of energy surplus production are two of only three where a featured state produced more trillion BTUs of a fossil fuel type energy source than was consumed in that state. The third instance was in Illinois where coal production trumped consumption.

Coal

Illinois

Production: 1149.6

Consumption: 1026.9

Natural Gas

North Dakota

Production: 317.9

Consumption: 83.8

Oil

North Dakota

Production: 1820.9

Consumption: 217.8

In this part of our energy series we further explore the net difference between production and consumption of energy sources. The sheer numbers show that the featured states relied upon coal, oil and natural gas as energy sources, despite their inabilities to produce the amount of energy they need to consume.

Overall, Michigan consumed 2155.5 more trillion BTUs of energy than it produced in 2013. Our production was 23.3 percent of our consumption. Only Missouri and Georgia produced a smaller percent of the energy it consumed. These states, along with Michigan, are exporting a huge share of their income to energy producers elsewhere. California had the largest absolute difference at 4,437.3 trillion BTUs, but California did produce 35 percent of its energy.. The state that came closest to North Dakota in terms of breaking even for energy consumption v production was South Dakota. Still, South Dakota consumed 114.1 more trillion BTUs than it produced.

In this post a nuclear energy chart is not included because each state produced nuclear energy as a power source consumed that same amount, meaning there was no net surplus or deficit. The amount of nuclear energy consumed and produced is included in the overall production v consumption chart below though.

The states featured in this series are:

  • Michigan
  • Illinois
  • Iowa
  • Indiana
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • Nebraska
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • South Dakota
  • Wisconsin
  • New York
  • Georgia
  • Oregon
  • California

Energy Comparison

There was only one state of the 15 featured in this post were more coal-powered energy was produced than consumed in that state. This state was Illinois, where 1149.6 trillion BTUs of coal-powered energy was produced and 1026.9 trillion BTUs was consumed. This net surplus of coal-powered energy is an anomaly in this post because, as the chart shows, reliance upon coal for consumption much outweighs how much is produced. In total, in the featured states, 7211.8 trillion BTUs of coal-powered energy is consumed while less than half of that (3023.8 trillion BTUs) is produced. There are also 10 different states where no coal-powered energy is produced there, yet, 2,628.1 trillion BTUs, or 36 percent of the coal-powered energy consumed by these 15 featured states, is consumed there.

Missouri had the largest difference between the amount of coal-powered energy it produced and consumed in 2013. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, there was 9.1 trillion BTUs of coal-powered energy produced in Missouri in 2013 but 806.5 trillion BTUs consumed in that same year, meaning there was a net difference of 797.4 trillion BTUs. With such a large difference, Missouri must bring in coal from elsewhere to fuel its coal powered plants. According to the U.S. Energy Administration, Wyoming was the main provider of this energy source to Missouri. Is this the right measure. Michigan had the second largest difference between the amount of coal-powered energy it produced and consumed in 2013 at 658.2 trillion BTUs. Michigan did not produce any coal-powered energy in 2013 but 658.2 trillion BTUs were consumed there in 2013. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, Michigan primarily relies on Wyoming and Montana for its coal needs, although other states, such as Kentucky and West Virginia also provide this resource to the state. For about 90 years, between 1860 and 1949, Michigan did produce a substantial amount of coal through its coal mines, however they are not longer active, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, leaving Michigan to seek this resource elsewhere.

Coal Energy

Natural gas is yet another fossil fuel based energy source where consumption typically outweighs production for these states. Of the 15 states discussed in this series, North Dakota is the only one where more natural gas was produced than consumed. In 2013, 317.9 trillion BTUs of natural gas were produced in North Dakota and 83.8 trillion BTUs were consumed, meaning there was a net surplus of 234.1 trillion BTUs. The production of natural gas in North Dakota has been rising since 2007 due to the large increase in the use of shales to produce this energy source, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

California had the largest difference between natural gas production and consumption in 2013 at 2,196.2 trillion BTUs. Although California was one of the largest producers of natural gas of these featured states (287.3 trillion BTUs), those numbers still paled in comparison to the amount of natural gas it utilized (2,483.5 trillion BTUs). According to a recent LA Times article, natural gas is now the single highest source of power generation in California. Various interstate pipelines from Arizona, Nevada, Wyoming and Oregon bring natural gas into California for consumption, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

For Michigan, there was a net difference of 702.2 trillion BTUs of natural gas consumption; 129.9 trillion BTUs of natural gas were produced in Michigan in 2013 and 832.1 trillion BTUs were consumed there. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, Michigan is regularly one of the top 5 users of natural gas for residential purposes. While Michigan has a large number of gas wells (about 10,000), production in the state has been declining since 1997. Due to this, much of the natural gas consumed in Michigan is obtained through pipelines that cross through the state from Ohio, Indiana and Wisconsin, with the end destination of these pipelines being the northeastern states and Canada, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Slide07

Just as with natural gas, North Dakota again was the only featured state to produce more oil than was consumed in 2013, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. In 2013, 1820.9 trillion BTUs of oil were produced there in 2013 and 217.8 trillion BTUs were consumed there. California had the largest net difference between oil consumption and production in 2013. For a net difference of 2092.6 there was 3246.6 trillion BTUs of oil consumed in California and 1153.8 trillion produced there. Despite California producing about 6 percent of the country’s crude oil, its rate of consumption of the fossil fuel outweighs the rate of production. This means, California must rely on other geographic locations to supply its needs. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, foreign countries (particularly Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Ecuador) supply more than 50 percent of the crude oil refined in the state. Additionally, North Dakota, Utah, New Mexico and Wyoming also supply crude oil for refining and consumption.

In Michigan in 2013, there was 823.4 trillion BTUs of oil consumed and 44.7 trillion BTUs produced, leaving a net difference of 778.7. The majority of the oil consumed in Michigan takes the form of gasoline. Michigan also has the highest residential consumption of liquid petroleum gasoline (LPG) in the country as a form of heating fuel. While there is a modest amount of oil produced in the state, it does not compare to the amount consumed, which is 18 times higher.

Slide09

Overall, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, it is typical of a state to consume about as much renewable energy as it produces. However, there are instances where a surplus of renewable energy is produced; this only occurs though because of additional biofuel production. In Iowa, 674.9 trillion BTUs of renewable energy were produced and only 384.7 trillion BTUs were consumed. The excess came from the biomass feedstock that was used to produce ethanol, which was then blended into motor fuel. Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wisconsin also produced more renewable energy than was consumed, although not as much as Iowa. Again, this was directly related to biofuel production used to create ethanol.

Of the 15 states featured, California both produced and consumed the highest amount of renewable energy. California produced 762.4 trillion BTUs of renewable energy and consumed 872.6 trillion BTUs. For consumption, nearly 5 percent of California’s utility electricity was produced from solar power in 2013, and other renewable sources such as wind and hydroelectric were also used for consumption. In terms of production, California produces about 8 percent of the country’s wind-powered electricity and is also home to the world’s largest complex of geothermal plants, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Michigan ranked in about the middle for the 15 states in terms of energy production and consumption. In 2013 179 trillion BTUs was produced in Michigan and 195 trillion BTUs was consumed. Aside from biofuel production, which created 95.5 trillion BTUs of energy, wind-powered energy was the largest production source for renewable energy in the state in 2013; 26.7 trillion BTUs was created. With more than 100 hydroelectric power plants, this form of renewable energy also contributed to the 13.5 trillion BTUs of renewable energy produced in the state in 2013.

Renewable Energy

In this post we saw the vast difference between a state’s consumption of energy and its production, and rarely did these states produce more than they consumed, relying upon other states and imports for their energy. A reliance on fossil fuels for energy was evident in 2013 and next week we will show how this reliance was even heavier in 2003. For the final post of this series we will show how Michigan, New York and California have changed in their reliance on certain energy sources from 2003 and 2013.

 

CityLab: Solar Power’s Success Relies on Community Friendly Policies

In a story written by CityLab it was found that in order for solar power to become a more expansive renewable energy source there must be policies in place that allow communities as a whole to reap the benefits, avoid solar mandates and block third party solar panel ownership. In this study Michigan was found to be one of the 10 worst states for solar power growth.

For more on this study click here.

Michigan Relies on Natural Gas the Most as an Energy Source

Last week we saw a large variation on the amount of energy produced between 15 carefully selected states, based on information provided by the U.S. Energy Administration. This week, we look at the major energy sources the 15 featured states consume energy from. Those featured states are:

  • Michigan
  • Illinois
  • Iowa
  • Indiana
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • Nebraska
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • South Dakota
  • Wisconsin
  • New York
  • Georgia
  • Oregon
  • California

(If one of the above states is not colored in a map it means it produced zero energy for that source. The other 35 states are not highlighted though because they were not chosen for comparison; this does not mean they didn’t utilize a source of energy).

The sources of energy discussed in this post are: coal, natural gas, motor gasoline, biomass and other renewables (which include solar and wind power).

Last week we saw a large variation on the amount of energy produced between 15 carefully selected states, based on information provided by the U.S. Energy Administration. This week, we look at the major energy sources the 15 featured states consume energy from. Those featured states are:

  • Michigan
  • Illinois
  • Iowa
  • Indiana
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • Nebraska
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • South Dakota
  • Wisconsin
  • New York
  • Georgia
  • Oregon
  • California

(If one of the above states is not colored in a map it means it produced zero energy for that source. The other 35 states are not highlighted though because they were not chosen for comparison; this does not mean they didn’t utilize a source of energy).

The sources of energy discussed in this post are: coal, natural gas, motor gasoline, biomass and other renewables (which include solar and wind power).

Slide04

Michigan used more natural gas for energy consumption in the state in 2013 than any other source. In 2013 828.5 trillion BTUs of natural gas were consumed in Michigan; 129.9 trillion BTUs of natural gas were produced in the state in that same year. Of the featured states, the most amount of natural gas was consumed in California at 2,483.5 trillion BTUs. The featured state where the least amount of natural gas was consumed in 2013 was North Dakota at 83.8 trillion BTUs. South Dakota wasn’t far behind though, 84.5 trillion BTUs was consumed there in 2013.

Natural Gas Consumption

Motor gasoline is another consumption category which the U.S. Energy Administration chose to highlight in its data category breakdowns (others mentioned but not included in this post include residual fuel, liquefied petroleum gas and jet fuel). California again came out on top in terms of consumption, 1636.6 trillion BTUs of motor gasoline was consumed within the state in 2013. In Michigan, 515.5 trillion BTUs of motor gasoline were consumed in 2013; nine of the other featured states consumed less motor gasoline than Michigan in 2013. The state where the lowest amount of motor gasoline was consumed in 2013 was South Dakota at 49.8 trillion BTUs.

Gas Consumption

Nuclear power was another energy source that was not produced by all of the featured states, and, as can be seen in the map below it wasn’t an energy source that was consumed in every featured state either. Of the energy sources discussed in this post, nuclear energy was the only source not consumed by every featured state. The featured states where there was no nuclear energy utilized were Indiana and North Dakota; these states also didn’t produce any. Illinois utilized the highest amount of nuclear energy in 2013 of the featured states at 1014.9 trillion BTUs. All nuclear energy produced in these featured states was consumed there. This means Michigan not only produced 302.2 trillion BTUs of nuclear energy but also that that amount was consumed there.

Nuclear Consumption

When examining which states consumed the highest amount of renewable energy sources the western states fared better when comparing consumption of these energy sources. California consumed the most amount of biomass of the featured states in 2013 at 294.7 trillion BTUs. It also consumed the highest amount of “other renewable” energy sources (which include wind and solar) at 351.2 trillion BTUs. The amount of hydroelectricity consumed in California was 226.6 trillion BTUs. Oregon and New York were the only states where more hydroelectricity was consumed, 315.8 and 238.3, respectively. Oregon was also the only other featured state (aside from California) that consumed more biomass, “other renewable” and hydroelectricity than coal in 2013. In Oregon in 2013, 71.4 trillion BTUs of biomass, 77.3 trillion BTUs of “other renewables” and, as noted, 315.8 trillion BTUs of hydroelectricity was consumed. About 40 trillion BTUs of coal-powered energy was consumed in Oregon in 2013.

In Michigan 13.5 trillion BTUs of hydroelectricity, 148.8 trillion BTUs of biomass and 33.1 trillion BTUs of “other renewables” was consumed in 2013. Overall, Michigan consumed slightly more renewable energy than it produced, that net gain was due to biomass consumption.

Biomass Consumption

Hydroelectric Consumption

Renewable Consumption

Over the past two weeks we have presented the basics for energy consumption and production by source in a select number of states. Next week, we will begin our deeper dive into the energy production surpluses and deficits on a state-to-state basis, showing reliance on certain energy sources despite the state’s lack of or limited production of it.

 

Michigan Produces More Nuclear Energy than other Sources

Over the next four weeks we will be looking at the energy production and consumption of various states throughout the U.S. to highlight how energy is produced and our reliance on it for consumption. For this series we featured 15 different states, including Michigan. These state are:

  • Michigan
  • Illinois
  • Iowa
  • Indiana
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • Nebraska
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • South Dakota
  • Wisconsin
  • New York
  • Georgia
  • Oregon
  • California

(If one of the above states is not colored in a map it means it produced zero energy for that source. The other 35 states are not highlighted though because they were not chosen for comparison; this does not mean they didn’t produce a source of energy).

These states were chosen either because of their proximity to Michigan, their similarity in size or because they represent a benchmark state with higher production and consumption of renewable energy sources.

In this series we show how Michigan compared to the featured states for energy production and consumption in 2013 (the most recent data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration) and, later, how each of these state’s consumption has changed between 2003 and 2013.

In this post we show how each state’s energy production, in trillion BTUs, differs by source. The production sources shown are: coal, natural gas, biofuels and other renewables (which include solar and wind power). Just because a state produces a certain energy source does not mean all of that energy created in the state is consumed there. For example, you will see in this post that Michigan, along with Iowa, Minnesota, South Dakota, Wisconsin, New York, Georgia, Oregon and California, do not produce coal as a form of energy, but each consume it (as will be seen next week).

US Energy Production

Of the 15 states highlighted in this series Michigan was not the top energy producer for any of the sources. On a national basis Michigan ranked 26th for energy production, producing .8 percent of the country’s energy. Of the 14 other states featured in this post, seven states produced more energy than Michigan did in 2013. North Dakota produced the highest amount of energy at 2,632.3 trillion BTUs, with crude oil being its primary production source. Missouri produced the least amount at 191.8 trillion BTUs.

(On a national basis, Texas produced 19.8 percent of the nation’s energy, giving it the highest level of energy production.)

Nuclear Energy Production

At 302.2 trillion BTUs in 2013, Michigan produced more nuclear energy than any other source of energy. Michigan has three operating nuclear power plants.

The only other featured states that produced a higher amount of nuclear energy in 2013 were Illinois (1014.9), New York (467.7), and Georgia (343.8). States that did not produce nuclear energy were Indiana, North Dakota and Oregon.

Coal Energy Production

More trillion BTUs of coal powered energy were produced by the states featured in this post, and on an overall national basis, than any other source of energy. Interestingly enough though, 10 out of the 15 states featured didn’t produce coal-based energy. Of the five states that did produce coal powered energy though, Illinois produced the highest amount in 2013 at 1149.6 trillion BTUs; Indiana followed at 883.3 trillion BTUs.

Natural Gas Production

Natural gas was a key source for energy produced in Michigan, and in 2013 it produced 129.9 trillion BTUs of it; North Dakota (317.9), California (287.3) and Ohio (196.3) were the only three states featured that produced more units of natural gas than Michigan did. States that did not produce any natural gas as an energy source were Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Wisconsin and Georgia. While not noted on the map, Oregon did produce a small of energy from natural gas in 2013, .8 trillion BTUs.

Crude Oil Energy Production

For crude oil production Michigan produced 44.7 trillion BTUs in 2013; North Dakota produced the most at 1,820.9. The only featured states to produce no energy from crude oil in 2013 were Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Georgia and Oregon.

Biofuel Production

Alternative Energy Production

Biofuels and other renewable forms of energy were the sources of energy production that each state featured produced in 2013. For biofuels, Michigan was more on the low end, producing 37.2 trillion BTUs; New York, Georgia and Oregon were the only other three states featured that produced less. Of the states featured, Iowa produced the highest amount of biofuel energy at 498.3 trillion BTUs.

For other renewable energy production, Michigan ranked somewhere in the middle of the featured states. In 2013 it produced 141.9 trillion BTUs of other renewable forms of energy, which include solar and wind energy (currently Michigan has 21 wind farms). California produced the most at 739.6 trillion BTUs, followed by Oregon at 452.4. Of the energy produced by Oregon, other renewables made up for 99 percent of its energy production.

 

Next week we will view how much energy each featured state consumes and by what source.

Employment in Detroit Growing, While Unemployment also Increased

  • From December 2015 to March 2016, the unemployment rate across the state remained stable while the city of Detroit’s experienced a slight increase (monthly);
  • Employment in the city of Detroit increased by 8,407 from March 2015 to March 2016 (monthly);
  • The Purchasing Manager’s Index for Southeastern Michigan increased from February 2016 to March 2016 (monthly);
  • Commodity Price Index increased from February 2016 to March 2016 for Southeastern Michigan (monthly)
  • Standard and Poor’s Case-Shiller Home Price Index for the Detroit Metropolitan Statistical Area shows home prices are about $6,900 higher than in January of 2015.

Detroit Unemployment

According to the most recent data provided by the Michigan Department of Technology, Management and Budget, the unemployment rate for the State of Michigan increased to 5.1 percent between December of 2015 and March of 2016. During this same period, unemployment in the City of Detroit marginally increased from 10.9 percent in December to 11 percent in March.

Detroit Employed

Since March of 2015 the number of employed Detroit residents in the labor force increased by 8,407, to a total of 217,137 in March of 2016. While the month of March in 2015 had the lowest number of Detroit residents employed in the labor force in the last year, March in 2016 has had the highest number of people employed for 2016.

The conundrum of increasing employment and increasing unemployment likely is a result of more people entering the labor market in the city, creating a situation in which more are employed, but more are also looking for work.

Detroit Manufacturing

The above chart shows the number of people employed in the auto manufacturing industry in the Detroit Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) (Detroit-Warren-Livonia) from March 2015 to March 2016. In that time frame the number of people employed in this industry has increased by 300, from 93,100 to 93,400.

PMI

The Purchasing Manger’s Index (PMI) is a composite index derived from five indicators of economic activity: new orders, production, employment, supplier deliveries, and inventories. A PMI above 50 indicates the economy is expanding.

According to the most recent data released on Southeast Michigan’s Manager’s Index, the PMI for March 2016 was 59.1, an increase of 7.1 point from the prior month. This increase is largely representative of the region’s employment, new order and production indexes increasing.

The March PMI was also a decrease of 5.4 from March of 2015.

Commodity Price

The Commodity Price Index, which is a weighted average of selected commodity prices, was recorded at 50 points in March 2016, which was 1.6 points higher than the previous month and exactly the same as what it was in March of 2015.

Detroit Home Price

The above charts show the Standard and Poor’s Case-Shiller Home Price Index for the Detroit Metropolitan Statistical Area. The index includes the price for homes that have sold but does not include the price of new home construction, condos, or homes that have been remodeled.

According to the index, the average price of single-family dwellings sold in Metro Detroit was $103,590 in January 2016. This was an increase of $6,890 from January of 2015 and increase of $9,670 from January of 2014.

Southeastern Michigan Anticipating Water Rate Increases

With the proposed wholesale water rate changes for the newly formed Great Lakes Water Authority (GLWA)-which now provides water and sewer services to 127 former Detroit Water and Sewer Department (DWSD) customers-only one of the 89 tri-county customers is expected to experience a rate decrease above 10 percent. That community is the city of Novi and the anticipated decrease between 2016 and 2017 is 23.7 percent. The only other government entities expected to experience a decrease are Bruce Township, the city of Warren and the Southern Oakland County Water Authority (which is made up of Royal Oak, Berkley, Clawson, Huntington Woods, Pleasant Ridge, Southfield, Beverly Hills, Lathrup Village, and Bingham Farms). The reason for Novi’s expected wholesale water rate decrease is because of a water reservoir that went online in the city in July of 2015. This reservoir allows the city to hold up to 1.5 million gallons of water; it is filled nightly when demand and costs are lower and discharged at peak hours during the day, according to the Hometown Life article.

While wholesale rate decreases are expected to occur for a select few communities, wholesale rate increases are anticipated to be the norm for the region. The overall average wholesale rate increase for the region is expected to be about 6.1 percent, but Royal Oak Township’s expected increase is estimated to be about 20 percent. New Haven and Romeo were the only other two government entities in the GLWA that are expected to experience a wholesale water rate increase above 10 percent. New Haven is expected to experience an increase of about 14 percent, and Romeo is expected to have an increase of about 12 percent.

Charges for water service are a combination of a monthly fixed cost (which are associated with infrastructure costs) and metered usage. According to an interview the Detroit News held with the GLWA, monthly fixed costs make up about 60 percent of what the GLWA charges a community, and the remainder is metered usage. At the time of this post it is unclear why fixed costs vary so vastly from one government entity to another. However, this is a question Drawing Detroit will be further investigating.

GLWA

GLWA Rate Change

While both Novi and Bruce Township are expected to have wholesale rate decreases, they are two of 22 communities in the GLWA that had 2016 commodity costs above $10 per million cubic feet (mcf). Bruce Township had the highest commodity price per mcf of all the GLWA customers at $22.82 per mcf. Additionally, the township’s fixed wholesale monthly cost was $2,200 in 2016. In 2017 that fixed monthly cost is expected to increase to $2,300, and the commodity price is expected to be $21.44 per mcf. This represents a 6 percent wholesale rate decrease. For Novi, the 2016 cost per mcf is $16.99 with a fixed monthly cost of $560,000; for 2017 those numbers are expected to decrease to $12.96 per mcf and $475,000, respectively.

Royal Oak Township, which is expecting a 20 percent rate increase, has a current commodity cost per mcf of $6.85 and a fixed monthly cost of $10,300. Those numbers are expected to be $8.23 per mcf and $12,400, respectively.

As noted throughout this post, the 2017 rates and costs discussed here are expected; the GLWA has yet to vote on the regional rates and costs. The vote is expected to come in the coming weeks though so the wholesale rates and fixed costs can become effective on July 1, 2016. The proposed figures used for this post were made public by the GLWA in March of 2016.

Additionally, while wholesale rates were discussed in this post, each individual community has the opportunity to set water rates above the wholesale rates set by the GLWA. These rates are known as the retail rates and are ultimately what the customers pay.

GLWA Commodity Costs

GLWA Fixed Costs

The city of Detroit was not included in this post because when the GLWA was formed the city of Detroit was able to maintain operations of its water and sewer infrastructure. DWSD still legally owns the water and sewer infrastructure it used to service the now GLWA members with, but the creation of this regional authority allows the GLWA to lease water and sewer infrastructure from the city of Detroit for 40 years at a cost of $50 million a year.

Northville Public Schools have top ACT scores in region

For several years Michigan has required juniors in high school to take the ACT as part of their preparation for college. The overall results recently became available. For the 2014-15 academic year, Washtenaw County had the overall highest average ACT composite scores at 22.5, but it was the Northville Public School District in Wayne County that had the highest composite score for the 110 districts in Southeastern Michigan. At 24.6 (out of 36 points), Northville Public Schools had the highest ACT composite score and it was the Pontiac City School District in Oakland County that had the lowest score in the region at 14.3. The Pontiac City School District was one of nine districts in the region with ACT scores below 16. Another one of the nine school districts with an ACT score below 16 was the Detroit Public School District with an ACT composite score of 14.9. Wayne County had six of those nine districts with ACT composite scores below 16.

With a state average ACT composite score of 19.9 for the 2014-15 academic year there were 52 districts in the region that outranked the overall state score. Livingston County had the highest percentage of districts with ACT composite scores above the state average of 19.9 at 100 percent and Macomb County had the lowest percentage of districts at 24 percent.

The ACT test has been given across the United States as one way to measure a high school student’s readiness for college. It is a standardized college entrance exam where students are tested on math, English, social studies and natural sciences. In 2007 when the state started using the ACT test as the state-wide accepted exam. The 2014-15 academic year was the last year Michigan students were given the ACT though as a standardized test, and instead they will be taking a revamped SAT test, one that the state has concluded is more in line with college readiness standards, is lot less expensive, but some say is also more difficult.

Michigan also uses a standardized test for assessment of students’ academic progress. The current test is the M-STEP (Michigan Student Test of Educational Progress), which replaced the MEAP (Michigan Educational Assessment Program). This week is when M-STEP testing begins in Michigan schools.

SEMI_ACTScores

MISchools_ACTScores

Wayne County’s population loss remains the largest in the region—2010 to 2014

Between 2010 and 2014 Oakland and Washtenaw counties were the only two counties in the seven-county region that experienced a population change increase. According to U.S. Census Data, Oakland County’s population increased from 1.2 million in 2010 to 1.24 million in 2014 and Washtenaw County’s population increased from about 345,000 to 357,000. In Oakland County, three communities-Clarkston, Orchard Lake and South Lyon-experienced more than a 10 percent population increase. In Washtenaw County, there were also three communities-Bridgewater, Sharon and Lima townships-that experienced a population increase above 10 percent between 2010 and 2014.

In the same time frame, Wayne County experienced a 3 percent population decrease. In 2010 Wayne County’s population was about 1.82 million and in 2014 it was about 1.79 million. Of the communities that make up Wayne County, Highland Park had the largest population decrease at 13.5 percent; in 2010 the city’s population was 11,776 and in 2014 it was 10,375. Detroit’s population change was a decrease of 8.4 percent between 2010 and 2014. In 2010 Detroit’s population was 713,777, and in 2014 it was 680,250 . At the Census Tract level we see that most of the population loss above 10 percent occurred in neighborhoods along the eastside of the City of Detroit. Compared to the 43 Census Tracts in Detroit that lost more than 10 percent of its populations between 2010 and 2014 there were 24 Census Tracts that experienced a 50 percent or more population increase. Overall, at the Census Tract level, more areas in the City of Detroit experienced population increases than decreases, however, the number of people lost in certain Census Tracts is what caused the overall population decrease.

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Between 2000 and 2010 there were larger decreases (as might be expected given the longer time period) and smaller increases in population across the seven county region. Again, Wayne County had the largest population decrease of the seven counties. In 2010 Wayne County’s population was recorded at about 2 million and in 2010 it was about 1.82 million. The more rural counties-Livingston, Washtenaw and Macomb-experienced population increases above 4 percent between 2000 and 2010. At the more local level, only four communities-Independence Township, Sylvan Township, Detroit and Highland Park-experienced population decreases above 20 percent. Most of the population loss throughout the region was concentrated around Detroit and its inner-ring suburbs. When discussing the communities that experienced population increases above 20 percent, Livingston County, which had the highest population increase between 2000 and 2010 of the seven counties, had the largest number of communities with such high population increases. In Wayne County, which experienced an overall population decrease, only three communities-Northville, Woodhaven and Brownstown-experienced population increases above 20 percent. Two of those communities-Woodhaven and Brownstown-are located in the southern portion of Wayne County, and Northville is located in the northwestern portion of the county.

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Number of children with elevated blood lead levels decreasing in Michigan, Detroit

The total number of children with lead poisoning in the state of Michigan and in the city of Detroit under the age of 6 has experience an overall decrease since 1998, according to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. In 2014, according to the data, there were 2,050 children under the age of 6 with blood lead levels between 5-9 ug/dL, a significant drop from the previous year’s number of 4,793 . Of the number children under the age of 6 with blood lead levels between 5-9 ug/dL in the state of Michigan in 2014, 71 percent (1,462 children) were from the city of Detroit, according to the data (2015 data for the state of Michigan is not yet available). Some preliminary data from State for Detroit is shown in the charts below, but it is preliminary and not discussed above.

Also in 2014 there were 672 children in the state of Michigan with blood lead levels above 10 ug/dL; this was an increase of 19 from the previous year. Of the 672 children, 54 percent (323 children) of those children under the age of 6 with blood lead levels above 10 ug/dL were from the city of Detroit. Of the data provided, in 1998 the state had the highest number of children with blood lead levels between 5-9 ug/dL at 24,563; this also holds true for children under the age of 6 with blood lead levels above 10 ug/dL. In 1998 there were 7,144 children under the age of 6 with lead levels above 10 ug/dL. At the Detroit level, 1998 also had the highest number of children with blood lead levels between 5-9 ug/dL and above 10 ug/dL. There were 12,305 children under the age of 6 with blood lead levels between 5-9 ug/dL in the city of Detroit in 1998; this was 50 percent of the children state wide. Also in 1998, there were 5,002 children from Detroit under the age of 6 with blood lead levels above 10 ug/dL; the number of Detroit children who tested at the level made up 70 percent of the state total for children under the age of 6 with blood lead levels above 10 ug/dL.

While the number of children under the age of 6 with blood lead levels between 5-9 ug/dL decreased between 1998 and 2014 for the state and the city of Detroit, the percentage of the children from Detroit who made up the state total has increased (50% to 71%). The number of children under the age of 6 with blood lead levels above 10 ug/dL also decreased between 1998 and 2014 in the state and the city of Detroit, as did the percentage of Detroit children who made up the state total.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, 5 ug/dL is used a reference level by experts “to identify children with blood lead levels that are much higher than most children’s levels.” The CDC has recommended that public health actions be initiated in children under age 6 with blood lead levels above 5 micrograms per deciliter (µg/dL).1 Babies and young children can be more highly exposed to lead because they often put their hands and other objects that can have lead from dust or soil on them into their mouths.

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The total number of children with lead poisoning in the state of Michigan and in the city of Detroit under the age of 6 has experience an overall decrease since 1998, according to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. In 2014, according to the data, there were 2,050 children under the age of 6 with blood lead levels between 5-9 ug/dL, a significant drop from the previous year’s number of 4,793 . Of the number children under the age of 6 with blood lead levels between 5-9 ug/dL in the state of Michigan in 2014, 71 percent (1,462 children) were from the city of Detroit, according to the data (2015 data for the state of Michigan is not yet available). Some preliminary data from State for Detroit is shown in the charts below, but it is preliminary and not discussed above.

Also in 2014 there were 672 children in the state of Michigan with blood lead levels above 10 ug/dL; this was an increase of 19 from the previous year. Of the 672 children, 54 percent (323 children) of those children under the age of 6 with blood lead levels above 10 ug/dL were from the city of Detroit. Of the data provided, in 1998 the state had the highest number of children with blood lead levels between 5-9 ug/dL at 24,563; this also holds true for children under the age of 6 with blood lead levels above 10 ug/dL. In 1998 there were 7,144 children under the age of 6 with lead levels above 10 ug/dL. At the Detroit level, 1998 also had the highest number of children with blood lead levels between 5-9 ug/dL and above 10 ug/dL. There were 12,305 children under the age of 6 with blood lead levels between 5-9 ug/dL in the city of Detroit in 1998; this was 50 percent of the children state wide. Also in 1998, there were 5,002 children from Detroit under the age of 6 with blood lead levels above 10 ug/dL; the number of Detroit children who tested at the level made up 70 percent of the state total for children under the age of 6 with blood lead levels above 10 ug/dL.

While the number of children under the age of 6 with blood lead levels between 5-9 ug/dL decreased between 1998 and 2014 for the state and the city of Detroit, the percentage of the children from Detroit who made up the state total has increased (50% to 71%). The number of children under the age of 6 with blood lead levels above 10 ug/dL also decreased between 1998 and 2014 in the state and the city of Detroit, as did the percentage of Detroit children who made up the state total.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, 5 ug/dL is used a reference level by experts “to identify children with blood lead levels that are much higher than most children’s levels.” The CDC has recommended that public health actions be initiated in children under age 6 with blood lead levels above 5 micrograms per deciliter (µg/dL).1 Babies and young children can be more highly exposed to lead because they often put their hands and other objects that can have lead from dust or soil on them into their mouths.

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