Agriculture and Rural Communities Are Resilient to High Energy Costs

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Higher energy costs in the 1970s prompted all sectors of the U.S. economy to increase energy efficiency. Agricultural producers responded by making tradeoffs—replacing more expensive fuels with less expensive fuels, shifting to less energy-intensive crops, and employing energy-conserving production practices where possible. Energy intensity—defined as energy consumed per unit of total output—has steadily declined over time due to gains in energy efficiency in the agricultural sector, and this trend is likely to continue.

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