I'm working on a regional project that deals with energy data collecting and reporting.
There are lot of sources including the International Energy Agency (IEA) website, however for people who are new to energy statistics, it is not straightforward to get grasp on all the different concepts, like energy flows and products and how energy balances are crafted.
A new SE site on energy would be of great benefits for SE network.

  • 2
    Where's the community to back this proposal? Ask them if they want an SE site, before wondering here about having other people create it.
    – Nij
    Aug 3 '20 at 23:37

I am interested in this as well - I am an energy researcher for a non-profit and from our own research and discussion with colleagues, partners, academics, and funders there is a real need for a venue for Q&A and knowledge sharing in the energy domain. Energy is really big... touches every aspect of modern society big, and is only becoming more public as the world responds to the forces of climate change, environmental preservation, and distributed electricity generation and transmission.

To wax on the types of questions and content I could imagine in the community - not saying this is exhaustive or representative of what the community would seek to answer -

Like many technical fields there are conventions, jargon, scoping, and accounting principles that need to be considered. What does this field mean in this public dataset? (is it this specific accounting term? or is it inclusive of these other two measurements as well)

There are questions about data availability - Is a certain type of data available for a certain geography and time frame or frequency?

... or suitability of datasets for analyses - I want to impute country-level water consumption factors for electricity generation; can I use this dataset of water use factors from the USA in countries in South America?

There are questions that are easiest-answered by domain experts that you might have trouble getting ahold of - What are the realistic lower and upper bounds of electric vehicle penetration into the US commercial-vehicle market by year 2030? or What are the projected construction and maintenance costs of flywheel energy storage in the year 2050?

There are questions about individual real-world entities - Does power plant X run on Fuel Y? or What month did power plant X come online in year Y? or When did Company A sell their stake in this plant to Company B?

There are questions about theoretical entities, including those in community or system-level models - How do I add a concentrating solar power (CSP) plant in this specific model, is it only photovoltaic (PV) technology that is allowed?

There are questions about interpretation of reports or public releases - In the India government dataset on state-level energy demand projections for the next ten years, why are the projections for fuel X drastically different than in the previous data release? Did the methodology change?

I would also expect qualitative questions without clear answers, which may need to have a specific policy to address. - How is the COVID 19 pandemic affecting electric vehicle charging station rollout across California? or Is nuclear safer than natural gas plants?

I also see some natural overlap with existing communities, which may be meeting some of these needs already. Particularly I think the OpenData SE and GIS SE might cover some set of these questions already, though without the domain-relevant expertise. Interpretation of data fields or context around analyses and results is where I would see those communities drawing the line. There may be others, but those are two that are familiar to me.

The other issue, which may just be my own perception, is that alot of the energy space is proprietary. Financial trading markets and the analytics industries built around them are really tight with letting their information leak into the public. There are also so many of them, which might make answering questions a partial challenge if only a few members of the community have the ability to reproduce/explore the question. Limiting questions to only open data sources might help in this respect, but such a policy would exclude the OP who is using proprietary paid data themselves (though from a widely used source among the community).

Happy to support this endeavor as I am able.

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