Energy Intensity

Energy Intensity is the ratio of energy consumption to gross domestic product measured in Joule/USD. A demand indicator, it was originally a proxy for the energy efficiency of a country, and has been adapted to measure the energy efficiency of cities and corporations.

Energy intensity is an aggregate indicator applicable in both public and private decision-making scenarios, lending itself to scaling, allowing users to draw from a wide variety of benchmarks at the local, regional, national and international levels.

The first company to significantly reduce its US energy intensity within a one year time frame was Volvo: its New River Valley manufacturing plant, producer of 100% of its North American trucks, reduced its energy intensity by 30%, from 79.64 MMbtu per truck in 2009 to 60.42 MMbtu per truck in 2010.


Department of Energy – Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.  Energy Intensity Indicators.  Retrieved September 8, 2011 from

The Economist.  Power Slide. Energy Use.  Retrieved September 8, 2011 from

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