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IEA Claims Global Oil Demand Will Peak Before 2030

  • The head of the International Energy Agency has said that new projections show demand for coal, natural gas, and oil all peaking in the near future.
  • The research will be released in the IEA’s World Energy Outlook in October and suggests fossil fuel demand will peak even without new climate policies.
  • The driving force behind the decline in demand growth is the shift towards renewable energy and electric vehicles.
oil demand

Demand for oil, natural gas, and coal is nearing its peak, the head of the International Energy Agency said in an op-ed for the Financial Times, citing IEA research.

Noting that demand for oil and gas has been growing despite forecasts of peaks, Fatih Birol went on to say that “according to new projections from the International Energy Agency, this age of seemingly relentless growth is set to come to an end this decade, bringing with it significant implications for the global energy sector and the fight against climate change.”

The research, to be released in the IEA’s World Energy Outlook in October, suggests that even if governments do nothing more than they are already doing to curb the consumption of hydrocarbons, demand for all three of them will reach a peak within the next few years Birol said.

Among the reasons for the forecast demand peaks are the shift towards wind and solar energy, and electric vehicles, the latter seen bringing about peak oil demand before 2030, Birol said.

The IEA has also forecast a peak demand moment for natural gas. Per Birol, “This is the result of renewables increasingly outmatching gas for producing electricity, the rise of heat pumps, and Europe’s accelerated shift away from gas following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.”

Wind and solar generation capacity in Europe has indeed grown strongly over the last few years, even before the war in Ukraine began, but they have not yet been able to replace hydrocarbons and, in Germany’s case, nuclear.

Europe’s largest economy closed its last three nuclear power plants last year and was forced to dismantle a wind farm in order to increase local coal production for power generation.

Heat pump adoption in the UK, meanwhile, is running into obstacles, chief among them the often prohibitively high price and what some buyers complain is failure to perform as advertised.

By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com


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  • Marwan Ali on September 12 2023 said:
    I think the IEA like many other international organizations is focusing on the eutopia Agenda rather than reality. Oil was supposed to peak several times previously. The fact of the matter is that 60% of the developng world population is below 20 years old (Africa, ME and large parts of Asia), many of thse people are expected to rise above the poiverty levels as their economies develop and level of education increase. Now unless a disease comes or a Nuclear WW3 and wipes out a billion people, the energy consumption is going to go up, and according to population forecasts, there is a turn in growth by 2050, maybe then there will be a peak consumption. So not sure what the IEA is basing their projections on. There is wishful thinking and then there is reality.
  • Mamdouh Salameh on September 12 2023 said:
    Fatih Birol, the head of the International Energy Agency (IEA) said in 2020 at the height of the COVID pandemic that global oil demand is behind us. But he had later to swallow back his statement and his dented pride. Now he is projecting that peak oil demand will be reached by 2030.

    I am sorry to disappoint him and tell him that peak oil demand won’t be reached even in the next hundred years. Global oil demand will continue to grow year after year albeit at slightly decelerating rate because of government legislations, to some extent the impact of EVs and also because the notions of global energy transition and net-zero emissions are illusions. They are the biggest lies in history.

    Global oil demand will have to continue growing in order to feed a world population projected to rise from 8.0 billion currently to 9.7 billion by 2050 and a global economy expected to grow from $174 trillion based on purchasing power parity (PPP) now to $245 trillion by 2050. The only real limitation to future growth of oil production is physical exhaustion of reserves. This isn’t going to happen in the next hundred years because technology will improve the recovery factor (R/F) from reserves over the years. Moreover, global oil reserves would have been bolstered by new offshore discoveries, Russia’s Arctic oil and gas resources estimated to be enough for two centuries of Russian oil production in addition to the development of Iraq’s and Venezuela’s spectacular oil wealth.

    And despite 35 years of heavy government subsidies and daily media promotion, there are currently 1.4 bn internal combustion engines (ICEs) compared with 26 million EVs. The EVs currently displace only 1.39 million barrels a day (mbd). By 2040 the number of EVs would have risen at best to 40 EVs compared with 1.45 bn ICEs. This will enable EVs to displace a mere 2.27 mbd.

    Peak oil demand is a myth. Oil and gas are here to stay. They will continue to drive the global economy throughout the 21sy century and probably far beyond.

    Dr Mamdouh G Salameh
    International Oil Economist
    Global Energy Expert
  • Pat Patune on September 12 2023 said:
    The "International Energy Association" is now completely bias against the Natural Resource of , Gas, Oil,... Crude, Brent, and so on. It's time they were called out for the political changes they seem to have made. Cheers
  • David Jones on September 12 2023 said:
    Population growth is irrelevant if the population is using renewable energy and electricity for transport and energy needs. The recent population growth did not help Kodak films, or horse and cart sellers. The IEA is not voicing and opinion, it is making a projection based on detailed research and trend projections.

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