World Energy Use to Increase 53% by 2035, Despite Facebook Changes

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Time for a little reality check from the U.S. Energy Information Administration --- or a projection, at least, based on the reality of rising energy use in developing nations like China and India. The EIA projects world energy use will increase by more than half, or 53 percent, by 2035. That's just 24 years from now. China and India are due to account for half of the total growth. Of course, a lot of things could happen by then. Perhaps more of the world will start using less energy, and embrace efficiency and cleaner energy sources. Uh huh.

Much of the world may have missed the release of the International Energy Outlook 2011, especially with those mildly annoying Facebook design changes and important reality show premieres on TV.

Anyway, China alone, which recently became the world's top energy consumer, is projected to use 68 percent more energy than the United States by 2035, according to Acting EIA Administrator Howard Gruenspecht. That's one way for the U.S. to decrease its energy use, relatively.

Key findings from the EIA report:

  • China and India lead the growth in world demand for energy in the future;

  • Renewable energy is projected to be the fastest growing source of primary energy over the next 25 years, but fossil fuels remain the dominant source of energy;
  • Natural gas has the fastest growth rate among the fossil fuels over the projection period (2008-2035);
  • World oil prices remain high, but oil consumption continues to grow; both conventional and unconventional liquid supplies are used to meet rising demand.

Putting the renewable energy picture into perspective, renewable energy consumption is project to increase by about 2.8 percent annually, to 15 percent of total energy use by 2035. On the other hand, good ol' fossil fuels will still account for 78 percent of world energy use in 2035.

The EIA notes that policy changes from now until then will affect what happens. So may the next presidential election. Your forecast?

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