The International Energy Agency has released The World Energy Outlook 2006, the latest edition of the IEA’s annual flagship publication. The report’s baseline vision of how energy markets are likely to evolve without new government measures sees global primary energy demand increasing by 53 percent between now and 2030.
Over 70 percent of this increase comes from developing countries, led by China and India. Imports of oil and gas in the OECD and developing Asia grow even faster than demand. World oil demand reaches 116 mb/d in 2030, up from 84 mb/d in 2005. Most of the increase in oil supply is met by a small number of major OPEC producers; non-OPEC conventional crude oil output peaks by the middle of the next decade. Global carbon-dioxide emissions reach 40 Gt in 2030, a 55 percent increase over today’s level. China overtakes the U.S. as the world’s biggest emitter of CO2 before 2010.
According to the report’s Alternative Policy Scenario, the energy future can be substantially improved if governments around the world implement policies and measures they are currently considering. In this scenario, global energy demand is reduced by 10 percent in 2030 -? equivalent to China’s entire energy consumption today. Global carbon-dioxide emissions are reduced by 16 percent -? equivalent to current emissions in the U.S. and Canada combined -? in the same time-frame. In the OECD countries, oil imports and CO2 emissions peak by 2015 and then begin to fall. Improved efficiency of energy use contributes most to the energy savings.
The Outlook demonstrates that nuclear power could make a major contribution to reducing dependence on imported gas and curbing CO2 emissions in a cost-effective way. Biofuels can make a significant contribution to meeting future road-transport energy needs, helping to promote energy diversity and reducing emissions. Biofuels reach four percent of road-fuel use in the Reference Scenario in 2030 and seven percent in the Alternative Policy Scenario, up from one percent today.