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Facts for Features
CB13-FF.08
March 12, 2013

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43rd Earth Day: April 22, 2013

April 22, 2013, marks the 43rd anniversary of Earth Day — a day intended to inspire awareness and appreciation for the Earth's natural environment. The day came from reaction to a massive oil spill in waters near Santa Barbara, Calif., in 1969. In honor of Earth Day — and Earth Week (April 16-22) — this edition of Profile America Facts for Features includes examples of Census Bureau statistics pertaining to energy and the environment.

Heating and Cooling the Home

2.3 million

Estimated number of occupied housing units across the country heated by wood in 2011, which is more than 2.0 percent of all homes.

40,063

Estimated number of occupied housing units across the country totally heated by solar energy in 2011.

57.0 million

Estimated number of occupied housing units across the country heated by utility gas in 2011, which is about half of all homes.

Source: 2007-2011 American Community Survey five-year estimates, Table B25040.
<http://factfinder2.census.gov/faces/nav/jsf/pages/index.xhtml>

88%

Estimated percent of newly built single-family homes across the country with air-conditioning in 2011. In 1974, it was 48 percent.
Source: 2011 Characteristics of New Housing <http://www.census.gov/construction/chars/highlights.html>
Presence of Air-Conditioning in New Single-Family Houses Completed <http://www.census.gov/const/C25Ann/sftotalac.pdf>

Commuting to Work

25.5 minutes

Estimated average time for workers age 16 and older across the country spent getting to work in 2011, up from 25.1 minutes in 2009 and 25.3 minutes in 2010.

32.2 minutes

Estimated average time for workers age 16 and older in Maryland spent getting to work in 2011, the longest commute time in the nation. That's up from 31.8 minutes in 2010.

16.9 minutes

Estimated average time workers age 16 and older in North Dakota and South Dakota spent getting to work in 2011, tied for the shortest one-way commute time in the nation.

Source: 2011 American Community Survey
<http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/archives/american_community_survey_acs/cb12-175.html>

Working in the Nuclear and Forestry Fields

49,174

Number of workers employed in nuclear electric power generation across the U.S. in 2010, up from 41,502 in 2009. They had an average salary of $109,021, down from $110,355 in 2009.

53,525

Number of workers employed in forestry and logging across the U.S. in 2010, up from 53,003 in 2009. They had an average salary of $37,215, up from $35,128 in 2009.

Source: 2010 County Business Patterns <http://www.census.gov/econ/cbp>

Using Energy

19,061 trillion Btu

The energy consumption in the U.S. manufacturing sector in 2010, down almost 10 percent from the 21,098 trillion Btu (British thermal units) consumed in 2006.

-46%

The drop in the consumption of residual fuel oil in the U.S. manufacturing sector in 2010, going from 314 trillion Btu in 2006 down to 170 trillion Btu consumed in 2010.

Source: 2010 Manufacturing Energy Consumption Survey preliminary estimates
<http://www.eia.gov/consumption/reports/early_estimates.cfm>

Building a House

2,480 square feet

The average size of a single-family house built in 2011.

$267,900

The average sales price of a new single-family home in 2011. In 2008, the average sales price was $292,600.

9,000

The number of multifamily buildings built across the U.S. in 2011. Of these, 51 percent had at least 10 units.

Source: 2011 Characteristics of New Housing <http://www.census.gov/construction/chars/highlights.html>

Collecting Revenue

$1.5 billion

Estimated revenue for "waste collection — hazardous waste management collection services" in 2011 for estimated sources of revenue for U.S. employer firms.

$6.3 billion

Estimated revenue for "waste treatment and disposal — hazardous waste treatment and disposal services" in 2011 for estimated sources of revenue for U.S. employer firms. This was up 9.2 percent from 2010.

$6.3 billion

Estimated revenue for "local, fixed-route passenger transportation, by road and transit rail" in 2011 for estimated sources of revenue for employer firms. This is up 4.8 percent from 2010.

Source: 2011 Service Annual Survey, Table 4 <http://www.census.gov/services/>

Watching Nature's Fury

37.3 million

The July 1, 2011, population of the coastal portion of states stretching from North Carolina to Texas — the area most threatened by Atlantic hurricanes. Approximately 12 percent of the nation's population live in these areas.

Source: 2011 Population Estimates <http://factfinder2.census.gov>

15

The number of hurricanes to hit Florida's Monroe County from 1960 to 2008, the most in the country. The estimated population on July 1, 2011, of 73,873 is up 1.1 percent from the 73,090 counted on the last Census Day (April 1, 2010). Lafourche Parish in Louisiana and Carteret County in North Carolina have each seen 14 hurricanes from 1960 to 2008. Lafourche's 2011 estimated population 96,666 and has risen 0.4 percent since the 2010 Census. Carteret's 2011 estimated population of 67,373 has risen 1.4 percent. Source: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Coastal Services Center
<http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/pastall.shtml>
U.S. Census Bureau State and County QuickFacts
<http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/index.html>

Following is a list of observances typically covered by the Census Bureau’s Facts for Features series:

  • African-American History Month (February)
  • Super Bowl
  • Valentine's Day (Feb. 14)
  • Women's History Month (March)
  • Irish-American Heritage Month (March)/
          St. Patrick's Day (March 17)
  • Earth Day (April 22)
  • Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month (May)
  • Older Americans Month (May)
  • Cinco de Mayo (May 5)
  • Mother's Day
  • Hurricane Season Begins (June 1)
  • Father's Day
  • The Fourth of July (July 4)
  • Anniversary of Americans With Disabilities Act (July 26)
  • Back to School (August)
  • Labor Day
  • Grandparents Day
  • Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15-Oct. 15)
  • Unmarried and Single Americans Week
  • Halloween (Oct. 31)
  • American Indian/Alaska Native Heritage Month (November)
  • Veterans Day (Nov. 11)
  • Thanksgiving Day
  • The Holiday Season (December)

Editor’s note: The preceding data were collected from a variety of sources and may be subject to sampling variability and other sources of error. Facts for Features are customarily released about two months before an observance in order to accommodate magazine production timelines. Questions or comments should be directed to the Census Bureau’s Public Information Office: telephone: 301-763-3030; fax: 301-763-3762; or e-mail: <PIO@census.gov>.

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Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Public Information Office | PIO@census.gov | Last Revised: August 28, 2014