The U.S. Energy History Visualization project is motivated by proposals to transform the world’s energy and our belief that history matters: past U.S. energy transitions can help us understand our potential future path.
The interactive visualization shows 200 years of evolving energy use in America as an animated Sankey diagram. Line widths represent per capita energy flows each year from primary energy sources (left) to final uses (right). The project is an effort of University of Chicago’s Center for Robust Decision-making on Climate and Energy Policy (RDCEP), and its research is documented in Suits, Matteson, and Moyer, 2020, “Energy Transitions in U.S. History: 1800–2019” and its extensive supporting information. (This paper is currently under peer review and is available here as a preprint.) See also www.rdcep.org for further information. Data are available on request.
Contributors. This project is led by Liz Moyer, U. Chicago Dept. of the Geophysical Sciences and RDCEP. The research lead is Robert Suits, U. Chicago Dept. of History. Graphics were built by Nathan Matteson, DePaul University College of Computing and Digital Media, and members of U. Chicago’s Research Computation Center, including Ramesh Nair, Milson Munakami, Kalyan Reddy Reddivari, Sergio Elahi, and Prathyusharani Merla, with the assistance of Benjamin Kleeman, DePaul University.
Context. This animation is part of our larger effort to assess and visualize energy usage and energy history. See also our projection on the value of U.S. long-lived energy infrastructure at us.infrastructure.rdcep.org. We are currently expanding both tools to allow users to add data and create their own visualizations, and are animating energy use in China from the 1980s.
License. Licensed for public use under the Apache License, Version 2.0. You may not use this file except in compliance with the License. Unless required by applicable law or agreed to in writing, software distributed under the License is distributed on an as-is basis, without warranties or conditions of any kind, either express or implied. See the License for the specific language governing permissions and limitations under the License.
Comments, questions, and suggestions are welcome; send to firstname.lastname@example.org. See Contact page for information on data use and potential collaborations.