Exxon Sees Energy Demand Rising 25% by 2040 as Population Grows

Hot weather in autumn of China

The exterior of a building shows a vast amount of of air conditioning units being used by residents in Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, China.

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  • Oil demand will grow 20 percent to 112 million barrels a day
  • 10 key nations expected to drive 40 percent of demand increase

Energy demand will climb 25 percent worldwide by 2040, an increase equivalent to all the power and fuel consumed currently in the Americas, according to Exxon Mobil Corp.

Crude oil will retain its dominant position among energy sources a quarter century from now as population growth and rising standards of living in much of the world more than offset energy-saving efficiency gains, Exxon said in its annual long-term outlook released on Monday. Demand for natural gas will grow more than any other source and will account for 40 percent of the overall increase, according to the report.

Oil demand will grow by 20 percent to 112 million barrels a day in 2040, the Irving, Texas-based explorer said. The base year was 2014 for all the figures cited in the report, which Exxon relies on for long-term business and strategic planning. Those crude supplies will come increasingly from shale, oil-sands mines and deepwater fields, Exxon said.

Venezuela will emerge as a major producer of crude from oil sands in coming decades, the company predicted. Globally, output from oil sands will more than double by 2040, according to the report.

China and India will account for half of the global increase in demand for all types of energy going forward, Exxon said. Another 30 percent of the worldwide growth will be driven by just 10 countries: Brazil, Mexico, South Africa, Nigeria, Egypt, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Thailand and Indonesia, according to the report.

Coal use for power generation will drop to about 30 percent in 2040, from 40 percent in 2014, while natural gas will pull even with coal. Wind and solar will provide more than 10 percent of the world’s electricity, up from about 4 percent, Exxon said.

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