We forecast that the world’s primary energy consumption will rise by 14.2% to year 2031 compared to 2011. Associated CO2 emissions increase by 7%. These numbers reflect slower population growth, the complexity of realizing new energy projects, and the rapid increase in demand-side options. The forecast sees strong adoption of new technology within difficult energy supply and demand constraints.
The forecast is environmentally optimistic in that CO2 emissions level off due to a global shift to renewables and gas. The size of renewables in the energy mix doubles and renewables have further strong momentum beyond the forecasting horizon. OECD natural gas demand declines by 8.7%, but grows significantly elsewhere. The competition for energy security is likely to produce very different national strategies, giving major inter- and intra-regional energy and trade shifts.
Importantly, the structurally large shifts take place in the first half of the forecast, with further development on a new trend-line beyond this point. Energy prices are likely to exhibit strong differences between fuels and regions, determined largely by varying physical and non-physical constraints in the system. In the second half of the forecast period, we expect “new” renewables to have a general global influence of energy price determination.
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