Kansas energy consumption has increased 41% since 1960, driven by the growth in electricity demand. Since 1960, electricity's share of energy consumption has doubled from 15% to nearly 33% in 1997 (Figure 1). During this span, annual demand for electric power has increased 300%, growing from 24 to 99 billion kilowatt hours (kWh).
The growth of electrical energy consumption is changing the types and quantities of fuels consumed. In 1960, Kansas' primary fuel consumption was at 652 billion BTU, consisting of 57% natural gas, 40% petroleum, with coal providing the balance (Table 1). By 1997 (the latest year of complete data from the EIA), energy consumption was at 1,118.1 billion BTU consisting of 30% natural gas, 33% petroleum, 28% coal, 8% nuclear power, and 1% biomass and renewable energy.
The growth of electricity was fueled almost entirely by coal and nuclear power (Figure 2). During this period, primary energy consumption grew rapidly through 1980, but slowed after 1980 (Figure 3). Natural gas consumption was less in 1997 than in 1960, while petroleum use was up slightly after peaking in 1979 and again in 1988. Coal consumption has increased steadily and nuclear power has been consumed at a consistent level since the mid-1980's.
The change of the fuel mixture also changed where Kansas got its fuel. In 1960, Kansas was capable of producing all of the fuel it consumed. Today, however, only natural gas is produced in excess of consumption in this State. Nearly all the coal is transported by rail from Wyoming and Montana, uranium is mined elsewhere, and Kansas oil production has not kept pace with consumption.
Figure 1 - Electricity's share of Kansas energy consumption has doubled in the past 40 years.
Figure 2a and b - Since 1960, coal consumed in Kansas has increased dramatically from 2% to nearly 30% of Kansas energy consumption. Natural gas share has dropped from almost 60% to 30%.
Figure 3 - While overall energy consumption has remained
relatively constant in the past 20 years, electricity consumption
has continued to grow.