Coal, gas and oil use unlikely to diminish any time soon
This article from a fairly reliable source gives the lie to all the wishful thinking of Robertscribbler and others about "alternative energy" saving the planet
Fuels May Not Dwindle Anytime Soon
U. S. Energy Information Administration foresees continued dominance
for coal, gas and oil
Based on its latest projections, EIA said global carbon dioxide emissions from energy activities will rise from 36 billion metric tons in 2012, the baseline year used for the 2016 outlook, to 43 billion metric tons in 2040.Credit: PhotoDisc/Getty Images (MARS)
economic growth in China, India, Indonesia, Brazil and other emerging
countries will drive global energy consumption to nearly double by
2040, according to new projections released yesterday by the
Department of Energy.
the associated rise in carbon emissions will not keep pace with
overall energy consumption, thanks to a shifting global energy
portfolio that relies less on coal for power generation and more on
natural gas and renewable energy resources, the U.S. Energy
Information Administration said in its 2016
International Energy Outlook.
on its latest projections, EIA said global carbon dioxide emissions
from energy activities will rise from 36 billion metric tons in 2012,
the baseline year used for the 2016 outlook, to 43 billion metric
tons in 2040.
a 34 percent increase in energy-related CO2, compared to a 48 percent
increase in overall energy consumption from 2010 to 2040, when EIA
says the world will consume a record 815 quadrillion British thermal
units (Btu) of energy.
some critics of EIA's methodology say the projections on global
energy use and CO2 emissions failed to adequately account for major
international policy initiatives, including last year's pledge by
nearly 190 U.N.-member countries to make sharp reductions in
energy-sector greenhouse gas emissions.
a public rollout of the data at the Center for Strategic and
International Studies, EIA Administrator Adam Sieminski said that the
agency used more sophisticated modeling tools for the 2016 report
than previously available, especially in the transportation sector,
and that the world's demand for fossil fuels will continue to row.
in the aftermath of Paris, I think that our numbers suggest that
growth and need for petroleum in transportation and industry is still
going to be pretty strong," he said. "Those numbers could
come down over time, but it's still really hard to compete with the
energy density that's in oil."
COUNT OUT FOSSIL FUELS
other things, the new report portends continued rising demand for
natural gas, along with sustained growth in wind, solar and nuclear
energy production. Renewables, led by wind and hydro power, are
projected to be the fastest-growing energy resource over the next two
decades, according to EIA, expanding by 2.6 percent annually through
will also see solid growth, at 2.3 percent annually, underscored by
China's commitment to add 139 gigawatts of nuclear capacity to its
grid by 2040. Natural gas, long the No. 3 source of global energy
behind oil and coal, will by 2030 become the world's No. 2 resource
as coal consumption plateaus with the onset of new international
of oil and other forms of liquid petroleum will fall modestly over
the next 24 years, from 33 percent of total marketed energy
consumption in 2012 to 30 percent in 2040. Oil will continue to be a
primary fuel for the transport sector, as well as a key fuel for
industrial uses in emerging countries.
experts cautioned against the idea that fossil fuels will become
20th-century energy anachronisms by the middle of the 21st century.
In fact, fossil fuels will still account for 78 percent of global
energy use in 2040, even as the growth in non-fossil fuels exceeds
that of oil, coal and gas.
natural gas resources and robust production—including rising
supplies of tight gas, shale gas, and coalbed methane—contribute to
the strong competitive position of natural gas," EIA said in the
considerably diminished from a decade ago, coal-fired power
generation is expected to grow by 0.6 percent annually over the
coming years and will account for between 28 and 29 percent of global
power generation by 2040, compared to 40 percent in 2012.
gas and renewables, including hydropower, are also expected to claim
between 28 and 29 percent of total global power generation by 2040,
with the remainder coming from existing and new nuclear plants.
is going to happen in many places around the world, and it will
reduce carbon dioxide emissions by a significant amount,"
Sieminski told energy policy experts and journalists gathered at
CSIS's granite-and-glass headquarters on Rhode Island Avenue.
one of the first high-level analyses of how U.S. carbon regulation
will affect global energy markets, EIA projects that U.S. EPA's Clean
Power Plan would further shave coal consumption by roughly 1 percent
after 2020 while driving a comparable increase in renewable energy
changes the global numbers a little bit, it changes the U.S. numbers
more, and it particularly changes coal in the U.S. by more,"
Sieminski said. "You can see coal plateauing."
the world's three largest coal users—the United States, China and
India—only India is projected to see an overall increase in coal
consumption by 2040. China is expected to begin reducing its use of
coal after 2025, while the United States is already seeing a downward
trajectory in coal use, one that could grow steeper if the Clean
Power Plan is upheld in court.
U.S. markets and policy will continue to be critical benchmarks for
global energy, the United States will not be among the
fastest-growing energy markets going forward, EIA found.
fact, by 2040, nearly two-thirds of all of the world's energy use
will be in developing countries outside the 34-member Organisation
for Economic Co-operation and Development. Among non-OECD members,
Asian countries like China, India and Indonesia will account for 55
percent of all new energy use through 2040, the analysis found.
oil and liquid fuels consumption for industry and transportation will
be particularly strong in countries like China and India, Sieminski
said, where rising incomes and a proliferation of privately owned
cars and trucks has led to significant increases in vehicles miles
critics like David Turnbull of the climate-focused nonprofit group
Oil Change International said EIA should have given stronger
consideration to shifting national and international climate
policies, especially over the last several years.
all know that we're moving in a different direction now,"
Turnbull said. "The Paris Agreement was a clear indication that
the fossil fuel era was ending. To make a projection that ignores
some of these major shifts in public opinion, in energy markets, in
renewable energy policy, is leaving out a big piece of the picture."
spokesman for EIA stressed in an email that the agency did not ignore
the Paris accord or other international agreements in its analysis.
fact, the report makes clear that EIA "has tried to incorporate
some of the specific details," such as renewable energy goals
put forward in the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change, in
its 2016 IEO reference case.
"However, a great deal of
uncertainty remains with regard to the implementation of policies to
meet stated goals."
his comments at CSIS, Sieminski acknowledged that long-term
projections like those in the IEO are imperfect and that policy and
technology changes can lead to radically different outcomes than the
best analysis can predict.
probably a lot of flex in these numbers," Sieminski said. "Does
that mean that we are wasting taxpayer dollars doing it? The answer
is no. It's hugely valuable to policymakers, it's hugely valuable to