COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo.
Drivers for energy demand include population growth and
economic activity. While the world population will grow to 9
billion by 2040 from 7 billion, economies around the world are
becoming more efficient with their energy consumption, and at
an accelerated pace.
This modifies demand somewhat,
allowing it to grow more slowly than either economies or
population, Todd Onderdonk, ExxonMobil Corp.s senior
energy advisor of corporate strategic planning, said.
"Electricity is the largest source of energy demand today, when
100 years ago it was a novelty," he said May 17 at the American
Iron and Steel Institutes general meeting, co-hosted by
the Metals Service Center Institute.
Electricity demand will rise 85
percent through 2040, with growth relatively flat in mature
industrial economies and skyrocketing 150 percent in emerging
One of the largest growth
markets for energy through 2040 will be transportation,
although light vehicle energy consumption should be flat as
cars become more efficient. The world fleet of passenger
vehicles is expected to double to 1.6 billion units by 2040
from 800 million units today, with the vast bulk of growth
occurring in developing nations.
"Heavy duty, aviation, marine
and rail are all growing more, reflecting world trade
activity," Onderdonk said, but noted that North American energy
use will be relatively flat through 2040.
"The biggest change is going to
be in the mix of energy sources. Oil demand has already peaked
and will taper down. Gas squeezes out coal here, too," he said.
Globally, "oil is No. 1 today (as a fuel source) and still will
be in 2040. The biggest change is natural gas. That will
surpass coal and become No. 2 by 2025."
On the supply side, the Irving,
Texas, company expects oil and gas to supply about 60 percent
of global energy needs in 2040, followed by coal, renewables
and nuclear power, he said.