Within the United States, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, 93% of the energy used by our homes and businesses is produced by fossil fuel and nuclear systems.
Of the fossil fuels we use on a daily basis, we in the United States produce 26% of the crude oil, 88% of the natural gas and 99% of the coal. We use 6.75 times the amount of crude oil used by Russia, 2.5 times as much as China and 4.07 times as much as Japan. We spend over $1 billion dollars per day to purchase the crude oil that we need to satisfy our insatiable oil appetite. Further, we import crude oil from every oil producing country in the entire world including Canada, Mexico, and Algeria. The United States is the only major oil producer that also imports oil.
In the USA, oil is used mainly for transportation, and the generation of electricity; natural gas is used to heat our homes and generate electricity; and coal is used primarily for the generation of electricity. Overall, natural gas is the largest fuel system used within the USA to generate electricity and petroleum accounts for 6.71% of all electricity generated within the US.
Currently, renewable energy systems account for 20.52% of the energy systems used to produce electricity. Hydro and nuclear have been used extensively but wind, geothermal, and solar are significantly underutilized. More importantly the cost for the installation of wind, geothermal, and solar systems has been falling over the past few years and the maintenance cost is marginal.
Undoubtedly, it is observed by most people that energy systems, such as coal and petroleum, expel a large amount of pollution in the atmosphere. Hydro, nuclear, wind, geothermal, and solar emits absolutely no particulates in the atmosphere. Nuclear has an issue with the treatment of the waste by-products, the cost of installation, and the security of the facility. Hydro systems are functions of geography and though we have developed several hydro plants, many more could be developed; we however may have to build more dams to affect these hydro systems.