World's Top Energy Consumer

North America consumes 22% of the world’s energy even though it is home to just 7% of the world’s population. Energy consumption there is 5.9 toe/year/individual, three times more than the world average.

The high energy intensity mainly comes from buildings and transport modes. Consumption in buildings is 1.2 toe/year/individual, three times the world average. The consumption in transportation is 1.5 toe/year/individual, five times the world average. Energy consumption in the transportation sector in North America represents 35% of the total worldwide energy consumption in that sector. This makes North America, and the United States in particular, the top energy consumer in the world.

The consumption should progressively be less intense in the next 20 years. While energy consumption in buildings should continue to grow in absolute © Springer International Publishing AG 2017

V. Petit, The Energy Transition, DOI 10.1007/978-3-319-50292-2_4

Final energy consumption in North America (# OECD/IEA, WEO 2012)

Fig. 4.1 Final energy consumption in North America (# OECD/IEA, WEO 2012)

Primary energy consumption in North America (© OECD/IEA, WEO 2012)

Fig. 4.2 Primary energy consumption in North America (© OECD/IEA, WEO 2012)

value, it should decrease in absolute value in transportation as a result of energy efficiency measures and investments. Energy consumption in North America should drop to 5.1 toe/year/individual by 2035 (Fig. 4.1).

Most of the energy consumed in North America comes from fossil fuels; half of it comes from oil. The dependency on oil should progressively reduce in the coming years as the country initiates energy efficiency measures. The coal footprint would also reduce, while natural gas would increase and take a stronger market share of the overall energy mix of North America. This growth is naturally sustained with local shale gas (Fig. 4.2).

To sum up, North America is by far the topmost energy consumer in the world, globally and per individual. This shall continue to be the case, even though the gap with other regions will narrow. In absolute value terms, the energy needs of the region shall continue to increase because of the dynamics of its population and of its economy, but the growth would be tamed thanks to energy efficiency measures, in particular in transportation.

 
Source
< Prev   CONTENTS   Source   Next >