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Fuel Efficiency

April 4, 2014

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Profile America — Friday, April 4th. Perhaps most people are now familiar with the data processing expression "garbage in — garbage out." In these days of intensive search for alternative ways to generate power, the words have become "garbage in — energy out," as a number of power plants burn garbage instead of fossil fuels. The first power plant in the U.S. to burn garbage was the Union Electric Company in St. Louis, Missouri, on this date in 1972. The U.S. now burns about 12 percent of its trash, compared to the 80 percent of the world leader, Denmark. Coal, natural gas, oil and nuclear power currently generate most electricity used in the U.S. Over 4 trillion kilowatt-hours are generated, of which about 19 billion are created by incinerating waste. Profile America is in its 16th year as a public service of the U.S. Census Bureau.

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Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Public Information Office | Last Revised: March 21, 2014