API Key Usage

After signing up, you'll be given your own, unique API key. This 40 character string is your API key. The key:

  • Uniquely identifies you.
  • Gives you access to all APIs from agencies participating in api.data.gov's service.
  • Should be kept private and should not be shared.

To use your key, simply pass the key as a URL query parameter when making Web service requests. For example:

GET https://api.data.gov/nrel/alt-fuel-stations/v1.json?limit=1&api_key=YOUR_KEY_HERE

Ways to Pass Your API Key

Your API key may be passed to the service in a few different ways. Pick which ever method is easiest for you.

HTTP Header

Pass the API key into the X-Api-Key header:

curl -H 'X-Api-Key: DEMO_KEY' 'https://api.data.gov/nrel/alt-fuel-stations/v1.json?limit=1'

GET Query Parameter

Pass the API key into the api_key GET query string parameter:

curl 'https://api.data.gov/nrel/alt-fuel-stations/v1.json?limit=1&api_key=YOUR_KEY_HERE'

Note: The GET query parameter may be used for non-GET requests (such as POST and PUT).

HTTP Basic Auth Username

As an alternative, pass the API key as the username (with an empty password) using HTTP basic authentication:

curl 'https://YOUR_KEY_HERE@api.data.gov/nrel/alt-fuel-stations/v1.json?limit=1'
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