The residential sector consists of private households. Energy is consumed primarily for space heating, water heating, air conditioning, refrigeration, cooking, clothes drying, and lighting. Fuel used for motor vehicles by household members is included in the transportation sector.
For the residential, commercial, and industrial sectors, a net total or net energy consumption (less electrical system energy losses) is provided to indicate the energy actually consumed by these sectors. In addition, energy consumed in the generation, transmission, and distribution of electricity (electrical system energy losses) is allocated to each sector based on the electricity consumed by the sector. Thus, total energy consumption represents the energy consumed by the sector as well as that used to provide electricity to the sector.
Between 2019 and 2020, residential sector net energy use decreased 7.24 percent to 84.6 trillion British thermal units (Btu), which was 13.0 percent below the peak of 97.2 trillion Btu recorded in 1972. Total energy consumption attributed to the residential sector in 2020 was 160.1 trillion Btu, an decrease of 5.5 percent from 2019. Renewable energy use decreased 23.3 percent from 2019, Petroleum use decreased 17.2 percent, and natural gas use decreased 11.4 percent. Electricity use increased two percent. Coal consumption remained at a level low enough to round to zero.
In 2020, 46.7 percent of the residential sector's energy needs were met by natural gas. Forty–two and four–tenths percent (42.4%) of the energy consumed in the residential sector was electricity, 7.7 percent were petroleum products, and 3.3 percent was renewable energy. According to the 2019 American Community Survey, 59 percent of Nebraska's households used natural gas for home heating, 31 percent used electricity, 7 percent used propane, 0.4 percent used heating oil, and 0.01 percent used coal.