Worldwide demand for energy will increase by 44 percent in the next 20 years, with developing economies – particularly those in China, India, Brazil, and Russia – accounting for nearly 75 percent of the demand growth, according to a forecast from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).
The agency predicts that oil will supply about 32 percent of the world’s energy needs by 2030 – down from about 36 percent today – and that wind and solar power will account for 11 percent of global energy supplies. The EIA forecast does not take into account the impact of a possible global agreement on reducing greenhouse gases. Without such an accord, global emissions of carbon dioxide are expected to rise by a third in the next 20 years, reaching 40 billion metric tons a year – a level that climate change scientists say would sharply increase temperatures and destabilize the global climate system.
The EIA forecasts that oil prices will begin to rise next year as the global recession eases, hitting $110 a barrel by 2015 – nearly double the average 2009 price.
This article originally appeared on Yale Environment 360 at http://e360.yale.edu
[photo: flickr/Jouni Lehti]