01 October 2018, Sweetcrude, Lagos — The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC, says it expects global energy demand increasing by a robust 33% between 2015 and 2040.
In its newly released World Oil Outlook, WOO 2018, OPEC says the rise will be driven predominantly by developing countries, which see almost 95% of the overall growth.
“Energy will be required to power more homes, more services, more businesses, more cars, more planes, more ships, and more technologies”.
At the same time, the group said there is a need to recognise the threat posed by climate change to the environment, adding that OPEC remains fully engaged and supportive of the Paris Agreement.
“We firmly believe that a global consensus from the multilateral process remains the best and most inclusive way for all nations to collectively mitigate or adapt to the impacts of climate change based on the core principle of ‘common but differentiated responsibilities’ in a fair and equitable manner”.
The 2018 Outlook underscores that OPEC is fully aware of the dual challenge of meeting growing energy demand, while constantly improving the environmental footprint of all the energies used.
To put it simply, OPEC says the basic energy challenge can be summed up in two questions: how can we ensure there is enough supply to meet expected future demand growth? How can this growth be achieved in a sustainable way, balancing the needs of people in relation to their social welfare, the economy, and the environment?
“What the Outlook emphasizes is that all energies are required. It is not about choosing one energy source over another”.
“In fact, the Reference Case for this year’s Outlook sees all energy sources expanding over the entire forecast period, except coal that peaks around 2030”.
“Nonetheless, it is vital we appreciate just what each energy source provides today, and what they can provide in the decades ahead”.
According to the report, no doubt that renewables, such as solar and wind, will continue to significantly expand their role. They are expected to have the highest average growth rate of around 7.4% per annum over the period to 2040, although it is important to remember their current low base.
“OPEC Member Countries recognize and support the development of renewables. Many of our countries have great sources of solar and wind, and significant investments are being made in these fields”.
Nuclear is also expected to witness some expansion in its share of the global energy mix, and biomass and hydropower are forecast to maintain their shares in the years ahead.
Overall, these renewable energies and nuclear are expected to increase their share in the energy mix from around 18% in 2015 to about 25% by 2040.
The upshot of this is that all of the three current main primary sources of energy – oil, gas, and coal – are still anticipated to supply about three-quarters of the energy mix by 2040. Oil is expected at around 28%, with gas at 25%, and coal at just over 22%.