It foresees significant progress for energy efficiency, but
global energy demand is still expected to increase by more than 40 per cent
towards 2040. Fossil fuels account for the majority of the increase. Even
faster growth is projected for in nuclear and renewable, reflecting a steady
greening of the energy mix.
Statoil emphasizes the uncertainty connected with any
long-term outlook, but points to the connection between energy and economic
“Our assessment suggests that global growth will
continue at an average of 2.8 per cent per year over the coming three decades.
This is close to the average of the previous 30 years, even though we expect a
gradual slowdown in growth towards 2040,” says Statoil chief economist
According to the outlook, the future expansion in global
energy demand will be significantly slower than for economic activity, with an
average annual growth of only 1.1% (from 13 bn toe in 2010 to 18 bn toe by
“Demand will increase for all types of energy. At the
same time, we expect continued progress for energy efficiency, amounting to a
40 per cent reduction in energy use per dollar of real GDP,” says Mohn.
Natural gas as a fuel
of the future
Global oil demand is expected to reach a plateau by
2030: “Following steady annual
growth around 1.0 mbd, global oil demand is expected to slow down during the
2020s, before it levels out just above 100 mbd around 2030,” says chief
analyst Eirik Wærness. This is due to slowing economic growth, rising energy
efficiency and further penetration of electricity and gas.
Natural gas is seen as a fuel of the future: “Global
gas demand is projected to increase by 60 per cent by 2040. Positive drivers
include significant new available supply at moderate costs and environmental
policies,” says Wærness. Natural gas is the cleanest fossil fuel, and
Statoil believes that natural gas will serve as an important and cost-efficient
means to meet the challenge of global warming.
In aggregate, the fossil fuel share of the global energy mix
is expected to drop from 81 per cent in 2010 to 73 per cent in 2040: “In
OECD Europe, renewables is expected to more than double towards 2040, and
becoming the second most important fuel with a 24 per cent share of the energy
mix in the region,” says Wærness. This development is driven by climate
and environmental policies, energy security concerns, as well as price and cost
Policies may drive
greener energy change
“Reduction in global CO2 emissions are possible if governments
could agree on sufficiently tough coordinated policy measures.”
Global CO2 emissions increased by an annual average of 1.8%
between 1990 and 2009; totaling around 30 billion tons per year in 2009.
“Given the outlook for economic growth, current trends
in energy and climate policies and the stickiness of energy-consuming capital
equipment, energy-related CO2 emissions are projected to continue increasing
until about 2030. From 2030, we expect lower energy demand growth, increased
share of renewables and the effects of carbon capture and storage (CCS) to
deliver lower emissions going forward,” says Wærness.
The outlook also includes two alternatives to the base case,
based on different combinations of economic growth, energy efficiency, energy
mix and policies, and representing possible, but less likely outcomes.
One alternative is characterized by higher growth and energy
demand, higher energy efficiency and somewhat tougher climate policies, while
the other is based on lower growth, lower energy demand and lower energy