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U.S. Department of Transportation U.S. Department of Transportation Icon United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

Table 6-10 Energy Intensities of Domestic Freight Transportation Modes: 2007-2013

Tuesday, January 5, 2016


  2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013
Highway1 (Btu per vehicle-mile) 21,238 21,008 21,024 21,499 21,677 21,525 21,540
Railroad (Class I) (Btu per freight-car-mile) 14,846 14,573 13,907 13,733 14,043 13,800 14,607
Railroad (Class I) (Btu per ton-mile) 320 305 291 289 298 294 296
Domestic Waterborne Commerce (Btu per ton-mile) 225 252 225 217 211 210 NA

KEY: Btu = British thermal unit; NA = not available.

1Includes heavy single-unit and combination trucks. Heavy single-unit trucks are trucks that have two axles and at least six tires or a gross vehicle weight rating exceeding 10,000 pounds. Based on a new methodology, FHWA revised its annual vehicle-miles traveled, number of vehicles, and fuel economy data beginning with 2007. Energy intensity data are based on the new FHWA methodology. Information on the new methodology is available at Data in this table should not be compared to those in pre-2011 editions of Freight Facts and Figures.

SOURCE: Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Transportation Energy Data Book: Edition 34 (Oak Ridge, TN: annual issues), table 2.15, available at as of October 2015.