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Record Global Gasoline Consumption Defies IEA Forecast

Global gasoline consumption hit a record 26.9 million barrels per day (bpd) this year, exceeding the 2019 peak and defying estimates that the last pre-pandemic year was the time when gasoline demand worldwide would peak. 

The data, reported by Bloomberg Opinion columnist Javier Blas, shows the latest figures from the International Energy Agency (IEA). The same agency, which has been strongly advocating for a faster energy transition for years, had predicted just this year that 2019 was the peak demand for gasoline globally.  

Back in June, in its Oil 2023 annual report, the IEA said that “Growth is set to reverse after 2023 for gasoline and after 2026 for transport fuels overall.” 

“Gasoline demand will be disproportionately impacted as EVs progressively replace vehicles with internal combustion engines (ICE),” the IEA said, adding that “This means that the fuel is likely to exhibit the earliest and most pronounced peak in demand.”

And it also said that “Usage will never return to 2019 levels and the post

pandemic peak could come as early as 2023. Following a brief plateau, the decline is forecast to accelerate from 2026 onwards.” 

However, the IEA’s latest figures not only show that 2019 wasn’t the peak demand year for global gasoline consumption, but that demand in both 2023 and 2024 would surpass the pre-pandemic levels. 

Per the latest data reported by Bloomberg’s Blas, gasoline demand globally is set to further rise next year, to top 27 million bpd. 

In the June report, the IEA predicted that “Following a brief plateau, the decline is forecast to accelerate from 2026 onwards, with 2028 demand 900 kb/d below that of 2019.” 

The IEA also famously said earlier this year that global demand for all three fossil fuels – oil, natural gas, and coal – is set to peak before 2030, which undermines the case for increasing investment in fossil fuels.  

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By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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