Fossil fuels will continue to dominate the world energy picture through the next two decades, with renewables the big winner among the alternatives, and technological advances curbing the energy thirst of the transportation sector, says BP’s just-published Energy Outlook 2030.
“Global energy will remain dominated by fossil fuels, which are forecast to account for 81% of global energy demand by 2030,” states a report summary, “down about 6% from current levels. The period should also see increased fuel-switching, with more gas and renewables use at the expense of coal and oil.”
“That gradual switching should see renewables, including biofuels, continue to be the fastest growing sources of energy globally, rising at an annual clip of more than 8%, much quicker even than natural gas, the fastest growing fossil fuel at about 2% a year over the period to 2030.”
“Our research shows that improved efficiency and hybrid cars – plus a growing contribution from biofuels – offer the most cost-effective options for slowing the growth of transport fuel consumption, rather than pure electrification or other fuels,” BP group CEO Bob Dudley said as the report was released in London.
Transportation Efficiencies Will Slow Energy Demand Growth
Globally, “transportation is likely to be the slowest growing sector,” the summary says, as improvements in fuel efficiency, including hybrid vehicles will partially offset in vehicle sales growth in emerging markets. “Hybrid vehicles (including plug-ins) offer consumer flexibility and appear capable of meeting anticipated fuel economy targets in 2030, BP says. “Oil is likely to account for 87% of transport sector energy use, down from 95% today, with biofuels filling most of the gap, and accounting for 7% of transport sector energy use.”
Global liquefied natural gas supply will grow at 4.5% per year to 2030, more than twice as fast as total global gas production. LNG is forecast to account for fully one-fourth of global supply growth from 2010 to 2030, compared to 19% for 1990 to 2010.
All told, global energy demand is likely to grow by 39% by 2030, or 1.6% annually, almost entirely in non-OECD countries, says the BP report. Consumption in OECD countries is expected to rise by just 4% in total over the period.
“The growth of unconventional supply, including U.S. shale oil and gas, Canadian oil sands, and Brazilian deepwaters, against a background of a gradual decline in oil demand,” BP says, “will see the Western Hemisphere become almost totally energy self-sufficient by 2030. This means that growth in the rest of the world, principally Asia, will depend increasingly on the Middle East in particular for its growing oil requirements.”
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