- Global energy demand grew by 1% in 2016 – similar to rises of 0.9% and 1% seen in 2015 and 2014 respectively and significantly lower than the 10-year average rate of growth of 1.8%.
- Almost all growth came from fast-growing developing economies; China and India together accounted for around half of all growth.
- Indian energy demand grew by 5.4%, a similar rate to that seen in recent years.
- Chinese energy demand, however, grew by 1.3%. This is close to the 1.2% rise in energy demand in 2015 and around a quarter of its 10-year average growth. Average growth during 2015 and 2016 was the lowest over a two-year period since 1997-98. Despite this slowing, the incremental increase in demand in China made it the world’s largest energy growth market for the 16th consecutive year.
- Demand from the developed OECD countries remained essentially flat (rising just 0.2%).
- Dated Brent averaged $44 a barrel in 2016, down from $52 in 2015 and the lowest annual average price since 2004.
- Global oil consumption grew strongly, rising by 1.6%, or 1.6 million barrels a day (mmb/d), above the 10-year average rate for a second consecutive year. Strong increases in demand were seen from India (up 0.3mmb/d) and Europe (up 0.3mmb/d) and while demand from China continued to grow (up 0.4mmb/d) it was lower than in recent years.
- Weak prices impacted the growth of global oil production which rose by just 0.5% – the lowest increase since 2009 – or 0.4mmb/d.
- Within this total, production from OPEC increased by 1.2mmb/d, with significant increases seen from Iran (up 0.7mmb/d), Iraq (up 0.4mmb/d) and Saudi Arabia (up 0.4mmb/d).
- In contrast, non-OPEC oil production fell by 0.8mmb/d, the biggest annual decline for around 25 years. The largest output falls were from the US (down 0.4mmb/d), China and Nigeria (each down 0.3mmbd).
- Global natural gas consumption rose by 1.5% in 2016, slower than the 10-year average rate of 2.3%. However, there were strong increases in gas consumption in Europe (up 6%), the Middle East (up 3.5%) and China (up 7.7%).
- Global natural gas production rose by only 0.3% – the weakest growth in gas output for 34 years, outside the financial crisis. With lower gas prices, US gas production fell for the first time since the shale gas revolution began. Australian gas production rose significantly as new LNG facilities came on stream.
- Global LNG imports/exports grew by 6.2%, driven by the new Australian output. LNG production is expected to grow by around 30% in next three years as further new projects come on line.
- The rise of LNG trade reflects an ongoing continuing fundamental shift in global gas markets towards greater integration, but also towards more competitive and flexible markets – with increasing volumes of LNG under shorter or smaller contracts or uncontracted.
- Global coal consumption fell for the second successive year, down by 1.7% or 53 million tonnes of oil equivalent (Mtoe). This decline brought coal’s share of primary energy production to 28.1%, its lowest share since 2004.
- Declining consumption was driven primarily by the US (down 8.8%, 33Mtoe), and China (down 1.6%, 26Mtoe)
- World coal production fell by 6.2% or 231Mtoe, the largest annual decline on record. The falls in production were again driven by China (down 7.9% or 140Mtoe) and the US (down 19%, or 85Mtoe).
- In the UK, coal consumption more than halved (-52.5%). UK coal consumption has now fallen to levels last seen at the start of the Industrial Revolution around 200 years ago. The UK power sector recorded its first ‘coal-free’ day in April 2017.
- Once again, renewables were the fastest growing energy source in 2016. Not including hydroelectric power, renewable energy grew by 12%. While below the 10-year average rate of growth for renewables of 15.7%, this still represented the largest annual incremental increase in output on record (an increase of 55Mtoe – more than the decline in coal consumption).
- Renewables now provide a share of just under 4% of primary energy.
- More than half of growth in renewable power came from wind, which rose by 16% in the year. Solar energy grew by 30%. Despite solar energy making up only 18% of renewables output, growth in solar represented around a third of the overall growth in renewable power.
- In 2016, China became the world’s largest single producer of renewable power, overtaking the US, and Asia Pacific overtook Europe & Eurasia to become the largest producing region for renewable power.
- Nuclear power generation grew by 1.3%, or 9.3Mtoe, in 2016. A 24.5% annual increase in Chinese nuclear output accounted for all the net growth in nuclear power. China’s incremental increase of 9.6Mtoe was the largest from any country since 2004.
- Hydroelectric power generation increased by 2.8% in 2016 – rising by 27.1Mtoe. The largest incremental growth again came from China and then the US
- Strong oil demand and weaker supply growth rebalance oil markets; inventories continue to weigh on oil prices
- Energy mix shifting; rising renewable energy offsetting steep falls in coal use
- Carbon emissions flat for third year, driven by weak energy demand and cleaner energy mix