Curbing global energy demand growth

Curbing global energy-demand growth: The energy productivity opportunity

By Florian Bressand, Diana Farrell, Pedro Haas, Fabrice Morin, Scott Nyquist, Jaana Remes, Sebastian Roemer, Matt Rogers, Jaeson Rosenfeld, Jonathan Woetzel

In-depth sector case studies covering buildings, transportation, industries, and electrical generation highlight how the right policies and investments in existing technologies yielding an internal rate of return of 10 percent or more could contribute to a reduction in global energy-demand growth by at least half to 2020.

Energy demand growth will accelerate to 2.2 percent, driven mostly by developing markets and consumer uses such as residential, commercial and transportation. Vast opportunities exist to curb demand by improving energy productivity through investments that yield rates of return 10 percent or higher, but targeted interventions will be needed to achieve them.

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Capturing these opportunities would contribute up to a half of the greenhouse gas (GHG) emission abatement required to cap the long-term concentration of GHG in the atmosphere at 450 to 550 parts per million (a range that experts suggest is required to prevent the global mean temperature from increasing more than 2° centigrade).

MGI offers an in-depth look at what's driving soaring global demand for energy in different countries and end users (including commercial and residential buildings, road and air transportation, energy-intensive industries such as chemicals and aluminum, less-energy-intensive ones such as food processing, and electrical generation). Using a proprietary economic model, MGI provides a glimpse into how global energy will grow to 2020 with current policies and sizes the substantial opportunity to curb this growth and, with it, GHGs. It also includes a detailed discussion of the reasons why available opportunities to raise energy productivity are not being captured and what policies are needed to ensure they are.

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