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Census Bureau News -- Profile America Facts for Features: Earth Day: April 22, 2014

WASHINGTON, March 12, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- April 22, 2014, marks the 44th 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.

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Heating and Cooling the Home

2.4 million 
Estimated number of occupied housing units across the country heated by wood in 2012, which is 2.1 percent of all homes.

Estimated number of occupied housing units across the country totally heated by solar energy in 2012.

57.0 million
Estimated number of occupied housing units across the country heated by utility gas in 2012, which is 49.4 percent of all homes.

Source: 2008-2012 American Community Survey five-year estimates, Table B25040.

Estimated percent of newly built single-family homes across the country with air-conditioning in 2012. In 1973, it was 49 percent.

Source: 2012 Characteristics of New Housing

Presence of Air-Conditioning in New Single-Family Houses Completed

Commuting to Work

25.7 minutes
Estimated average time for workers age 16 and older across the country spent getting to work in 2012, up from 25.5 minutes in 2011 and 25.3 minutes in 2010.

31.9 and 31.8 minutes
Estimated average time for workers age 16 and older in Maryland and New York spent getting to work in 2012, the longest commute time in the nation. (The two times are not statistically different.) Maryland's time is down from 32.2 minutes in 2011.

16.7 and 17.4 minutes
Estimated average time workers age 16 and older in South Dakota and North Dakota spent getting to work in 2012, the shortest one-way commute times in the nation. (The two times are not statistically different.)

Estimated number of people who rode a bicycle to work in 2012. This comes out to about 0.6 percent of the American workforce.

Estimated number of people who walked to work in 2012. This comes out to about 2.8 percent of the American workforce.

Source: 2012 American Community Survey

Working in the Nuclear and Forestry Fields

Number of workers employed in nuclear electric power generation (NAICS 221113) across the U.S. in 2011, up from 49,174 in 2010. They had an average salary of $111,750, up from $109,021 in 2010.

Number of workers employed in forestry and logging (NAICS 113) across the U.S. in 2011, down from 53,525 in 2010. They had an average salary of $37,986, up from $37,215 in 2010.

Source: 2011 County Business Patterns

Using Energy

18,817 trillion Btu
The energy consumption in the U.S. manufacturing sector in 2010, down 17 percent from the 22,576 trillion Btu (British thermal units) consumed in 2002.

The drop in the consumption of coal in the U.S. manufacturing sector from 2002 to 2010, going from 1,956 trillion Btu in 2002 down to 1,328 trillion Btu consumed in 2010.

Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration, 2010 Manufacturing Energy Consumption Survey

Building a House

2,505 square feet
The average size of a single-family home completed in 2012; 63,000 had two or fewer bedrooms and 198,000 had four bedrooms or more.

The average sales price of a new single-family home sold in 2012. In 2011, the average sales price of a single-family home sold was $267,900.

The number of multifamily buildings built across the U.S. in 2012. Of these, 6,000 used electricity as the primary heating fuel.

Source: 2012 Characteristics of New Housing

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

$7.6 billion
Product shipments value of recycled paperboard in 2011. This is up from $7.2 billion in 2010.

Source: 2010 and 2011 Annual Survey of Manufactures

Collecting Revenue

$1.2 billion
Estimated revenue for "waste collection – hazardous waste management collection services" in 2012 for estimated sources of revenue for U.S. employer firms. This was down 13.1 percent from 2011.

$5.7 billion
Estimated revenue for "waste treatment and disposal – hazardous waste treatment and disposal services" in 2012 for estimated sources of revenue for U.S. employer firms. This was down 5.1 percent from 2011.

$8.2 billion
Estimated revenue for "local, fixed-route passenger transportation, by road and transit rail" in 2012 for estimated sources of revenue for employer firms. This is up 8.7 percent from 2011.

Source: 2012 Service Annual Survey, Table 4

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

African-American History Month (February)

Back to School (August)

Super Bowl (usually first Sunday in February)

Labor Day (first Monday in September)

Valentine's Day (Feb. 14)

Grandparents Day (first Sunday after Labor Day)

Women's History Month (March)

Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15-Oct. 15)

Irish-American Heritage Month (March)/

Unmarried and Single Americans Week 

St. Patrick's Day (March 17)

(third full week of September)

Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month (May)

Halloween (Oct. 31)

Older Americans Month (May)

American Indian/Alaska Native Heritage Month

Mother's Day (second Sunday in May)


Hurricane Season Begins (June 1)

Veterans Day (Nov. 11)

Father's Day (third Sunday in June)

Thanksgiving Day (fourth Thursday in November)

The Fourth of July (July 4)

The Holiday Season (December)

Anniversary of Americans With Disabilities Act

(July 26)

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. Profile America 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; or email: [email protected].

Follow @uscensusbureau on Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, YouTube and Ustream

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SOURCE U.S. Census Bureau

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