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The World's Electricity Demand Is Rising Faster Than Its Population

Electricity consumption around the world is growing faster than the population, with consumption per capita rising, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said on Monday.

 

According to EIA’s International Energy Statistics, over the past decade and a half, most of the increase in global electricity consumption is attributable to a rise in electricity consumption in developing economies. In contrast, consumption in some major mature economies has decreased in the past decade.

 

Access to electricity for billions of people in developing economies and a continuously growing demand for electricity in those economies have been two of the key talking points of fossil fuel companies as they highlight that the world will continue to need oil and gas for decades to come.

 

In the United States, total electricity consumption has risen slightly since the early 2000s, the EIA says. However, electricity consumption per person fell by almost 7 percent between 2000 and 2017, due to higher energy efficiency and changes in the economy that have led to less electricity use per unit of economic output.  

 

To compare, per capita electricity growth in the economies of less developed countries more than doubled between 2000 and 2017, compared with a nearly flat trend in the economies of more developed nations, according to the EIA.

 

This year, however, the world's electricity demand is set to drop due to the coronavirus crisis, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said in its Global Energy Review 2020 in April.

 

Demand has been down due to the lockdowns in many regions and countries, which has affected the power mix, with renewables taking a larger share because renewables output is largely unaffected by demand, the IEA said. On the other hand, demand all other sources of electricity – including coal, gas, and nuclear power – dropped in Q1 2020.

 

Overall, global electricity demand is set to drop by 5 percent this year, while some regions could see declines of as much as 10 percent, the IEA said.  

 

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com  


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