Quantcast
Energy
Mike Mozart / Flickr

BP: Oil Demand to Peak by 2040, With 5x Growth in Renewables

BP predicted that global oil consumption is likely to peak by the late 2030s partly due to the rise in renewable energy, electric vehicles and increasing regulations on single-use plastics.

The British oil giant released its "Energy Outlook" on Tuesday forecasting that demand for oil will peak at about 110 million barrels per day between 2035 and 2040 before gradually slowing and plateauing. Consumption is currently around 97 million barrels per day.


BP's annual Energy Outlook is based on predictions from its "Evolving Transition" scenario, which reflects government policies, technological and societal trends.

For one, BP predicts consumers will start shifting to electric vehicles, from 2 million EVs on the road in 2016 to more than 300 million by 2040.

Still, that 300 million figure only represents a 15 percent chunk of the predicted 2 billion passengers cars that will be on the road by 2040, meaning there's still a long way to go before the death of crude, BP execs say.

"The suggestion that rapid growth in electric cars will cause oil demand to collapse just isn't supported by the basic numbers—even with really rapid growth," BP's chief economist Spencer Dale noted to the Telegraph.

"Even in the scenario where we see an ICE [internal combustion engines] ban and very high efficiency standards, oil demand is still higher in 2040 than it is today."

Furthermore, the report's Evolving Transition scenario does predict that carbon emissions will continue to rise, as seen in the graph below:

"ET" = Evolving Transition

Bob Dudley, BP's CEO, noted that while there has been political and technological progress in slowing the growth of carbon emissions, "this slowing falls well short of the sharp drop in carbon emissions thought necessary to achieve the Paris climate goals."

As the BBC pointed out from the outlook, BP expects carbon emissions to rise 10 percent by 2040—which would fail the emissions pledges made in Paris. The company suggests that reducing oil output of 85 million barrels per day would satisfy the goals of the global climate accord.

On a positive note, BP recognizes that renewable energy is the fastest-growing fuel source and will increase five-fold by 2040 to meet about 14 percent of the world's primary energy consumption. That would explain why BP is betting some of its chips in this sector. Bloomberg reported that BP recently bought a $200 million stake in British solar developer Lightsource Renewable Energy Ltd. and is considering a bid for Terra Firma's Rete Rinnovabile Srl, a solar company based in Italy.

Other measures are also putting a dent in oil demand. Dale told the Guardian that increasing regulations on plastics, such as bans on plastic bags, could mean 2 million barrels per day lower oil demand growth by 2040.

"Just around the world you see increasing awareness of the environmental damage associated with plastics and different types of packaging of one form of another," he told the Guardian.

Show Comments ()

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Sponsored
Popular
Malte Mueller / Getty Images

When Profit Drives Us, Community Suffers

By David Korten

As I was reading the current series of YES! articles on the mental health crisis, I received an email from Darcia Narvaez, professor of psychology at University of Notre Dame. She was sending me articles being prepared for an anthology she is co-editing with the working title Sustainable Vision.The articles present lessons from indigenous culture that underscore why community is the solution to so much of what currently ails humanity.

Keep reading... Show less
Popular
The Revelator

Interactive Map: Air Pollution in 2100

By Dipika Kadaba

Having a little trouble breathing lately? That's no surprise. Air pollution is already bad in many parts of the country, and climate change is only going to make it worse. Even though many industries are reducing their emissions, a warming climate could actually offset these reductions by intensifying the rates of chemical reactions and accumulation of pollutants in the environment.

Keep reading... Show less
Health
ddukang / iStock / Getty Images Plus

Is Apple Cider Vinegar Good for You? A Doctor Weighs In

By Gabriel Neal

When my brother and I were kids back in the '80s, we loved going to Long John Silver's.

Keep reading... Show less
Animals

Dumpster Debacle Distracts From Serious Spike in Whale Deaths

This week, a video of a failed attempt to put a dead, 4,000-pound whale into a tiny dumpster made the rounds on the internet, garnering chuckles and comparisons to Peter Griffin forklifting and impaling a beached sperm whale on Family Guy.

The juvenile minke whale washed up on Jenness Beach in Rye, New Hampshire on Monday morning, NBC 10 Boston reported. It was found with entanglement wounds, so researchers with the Seacoast Science Center and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) wanted to move the carcass from the beach to a lab for a necropsy to study its death.

Keep reading... Show less
Sponsored
Adventure
Muir Woods, which costs $10 for entry, will have free entry on Sept. 22. m01229 / Flickr / CC BY-NC 2.0

Visit Any National Park for Free This Saturday to Celebrate 25th National Public Lands Day

If you're stuck for plans this weekend, we suggest escaping your city or town for the great outdoors.

This Saturday marks the 25th National Public Lands Day, organized by the National Environmental Education Foundation (NEEF).

Keep reading... Show less
Climate
A glacier flows towards East Antarctica. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center / CC BY 2.0

Temperatures Possible This Century Could Melt Parts of East Antarctic Ice Sheet, Raise Sea Levels 10+ Feet

A section of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet that contains three to four meters (approximately 10 to 13 feet) of potential sea level rise could melt if temperatures rise to just two degrees above pre-industrial levels, a study published in Nature Wednesday found.

Researchers at Imperial College London, the University of Queensland, and other institutions in New Zealand, Japan and Spain looked at marine sediments to assess the behavior of the Wilkes Subglacial Basin during warmer periods of the Pleistocene and found evidence of melting when temperatures in Antarctica were at least two degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels for periods of 2,500 years or more.

Keep reading... Show less
Sponsored
Energy
Oil well in North Dakota. Tim Evanson / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

Pipeline Leaks 63,840 Gallons of Produced Water in North Dakota

A pipeline released 63,840 gallons (1,520 barrels) of produced water that contaminated rangeland in Dunn County, North Dakota, the Bismarck Tribune reported, citing officials with the North Dakota Department of Health.

Produced water is a byproduct of oil and gas extraction, and can contain drilling chemicals if fracking was used.

Keep reading... Show less
Insights
Residents stand in a long queue to fill water containers on May 27 in Shimla, India. Deepak Sansta / Hindustan Times / Getty Images

World Peace Requires Access to Safe Water

International Peace Day is Sept. 21. Mekela Panditharatne, attorney with the Natural Resources Defense Council, submitted the following op-ed to EcoWatch in commemoration.

In drought-ravaged East Africa, the cracks in the plains echo the fault lines splitting tribes.

Across the globe, the devastation of deadly brawls is being exacerbated by tensions over access to water. Water crises, often worsened by governance failures, can portend warning signs for instability and conflict. This year, the World Resources Institute cautioned that water stress is growing globally, "with 33 countries projected to face extremely high stress in 2040." The effects of such water stress span the gamut from civil unrest to open warfare.

Keep reading... Show less
Sponsored

mail-copy

The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!