department of energy energy consumption mapThere’s no denying that energy is a perpetually important topic, regardless of whether you’re talking about energy sources, use, efficiency or sustainability. And although it’s generally easy to think of energy in broad terms, individual energy consumption is equally fascinating — and that’s where the Department of Energy comes in.

Part of the Energy Department’s ongoing mission “to ensure America’s security and prosperity by addressing its energy, environmental and nuclear challenges through transformative science and technology solutions” includes the production of maps and data that more clearly illustrate energy-related topics. One of our favorites? A map that details the 2009 Total Energy Consumption Per Person, which are calculated in millions of BTUs a year.

The interactive map not only gives you a quick breakdown of energy consumption by state, you can click on a state for more information, including how a state’s energy consumption compares to the rest of the nation — and how that particular state ranks on a scale of one to 50.

Our home state of Missouri, for example, consumed 304 million BTUs per person, compared to an average of 308 million in the U.S. That gives us a ranking of 28. Interested in who nabbed the top spot? Wyoming, with a 2009 energy consumption of 956 million BTUs per person.

If you’re as intrigued by stats, facts and research as much as we are, the Energy Department is a veritable goldmine of information. Once you’re done exploring the energy consumption map, you can look at maps detailing Smart Grid Workforce Training Programs, Wind Manufacturing Facilities or the Sunshot Rooftop Solar Challenge, just to name a few.

Pretty fascinating, right? These images certainly put energy-related topics into perspective and make them easier to understand, too, which, to our way of thinking, helps better educate the public.

Were you surprised by any of the findings in the energy consumption map? How did your home state stack up against the rest of the country?