The International Energy Agency (IEA) is the world’s most recognized energy information and forecasting organization. The IEA is the starting point for understanding the complex interplay of government policies, private sector markets and the dyanmics of end-user demand.
Here are my take aways from the event as well as the IEA World Energy Outlook from 2015 presentation shown at the event.
1) Positive news from China as its economy shows signs of decoupling in growth of GDP and energy demand. This shift is a result of policies to make industrial production less energy intensive and the slow rebalancing of its GDP from manufacturing to service economy.
2) Growth in global demand out to 2040 remains tied to demographic transitions shaping emerging economies particularly India, Southeast Asia and (sub-Saharan) Africa. All of these regions are poised to capture their own demographic dividend in the decades ahead as populations enter their primary work and earning years. Access to electricity remains the most important story to follow.
3) The complex geopolitical and technological conditions of today’s low oil price environment will likely continue for the next few years. There are benefits to consumers and markets but trade offs with increased use tied to emissions, conditions that create lower incentives to address energy security and a potential downgrading of policy support (subsidies) for renewables.
4) Climate change. There is positive news leading into Paris gathering with ‘unprecedented political momentum’ among nations to establish policies to reduce GHG emissions. This change might happen fast enough for some but the direction of political will is positive.
IEA Outlook 2015 (Presentation on Nov 11th)
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