APR 05, 2019 11:12 AM PDT

Report Shows Record Energy Consumption and Carbon Emissions in 2018

WRITTEN BY: Tiffany Dazet

Last week the International Energy Agency (IEA) released its 2018 Global Energy and CO2 Status Report. The IEA is an intergovernmental organization of 30 member countries working to ensure reliable, affordable, and clean energy. A summary of the report’s findings is in the video below:

According to this report, global energy demand and consumption grew by 2.3% in 2018, which is nearly twice the average rate of growth since 2010. China, the United States, and India accounted for almost 70% of this increase in energy demand. The use of fossil fuels grew as well, with the need for coal, oil, and natural gas increasing worldwide.

The report cites robust economic growth in the United States and Asia as one reason for the surge in energy demand. In addition, weather conditions in some regions can be blamed for an increase in energy consumption. Colder than average winters and hotter than average summers in 2018 were responsible for nearly one-fifth of the rise in global energy use due to the associated cooling and heating consumption.

The increase in energy usage resulted in a record increase in associated carbon dioxide emissions. The IEA’s report found that energy-related carbon dioxide emissions increased by 1.7% since 2017, marking the second year of emissions increases since the signing of the Paris climate agreement in 2016. Unfortunately, these increases push the world farther away from reaching the emissions cuts targeted by 2025 within the Paris Agreement.

The IEA’s Executive Director, Fatih Birol told E&E News, “We see that there is a growing disconnect between those calls and what is happening in the real markets…which brings us further to reach the climate targets which were established by several countries internationally.”

Luckily, the report wasn’t all bad news. The IEA’s report states that emissions declined in Germany, Japan, Mexico, France, and the United Kingdom. This decline is attributed to reductions in oil and coal consumption, in addition to an increase in renewable electricity generation.

The IEA report cites a 4% increase in renewables in 2018 with solar PV, hydropower, wind, and bioenergy accounting for the growth. Although this is an improvement, the report warns that “the use of renewables needs to expand much more quickly to be back on track to meet long term climate goals, cleaner air objectives, and aims to provide access to modern energy sources.” 
 

Sources: E & E News, International Energy Agency

About the Author
  • Tiffany grew up in Southern California, where she attended San Diego State University. She graduated with a degree in Biology with a marine emphasis, thanks to her love of the ocean and wildlife. With 13 years of science writing under her belt, she now works as a freelance writer in the Pacific Northwest.
You May Also Like
DEC 11, 2019
Technology
DEC 11, 2019
Technology That Prevents Wildfires
A study by Stanford University researchers explains the development of a gel-like fluid that can serve as preventive method to reduce the incidence of wild...
DEC 11, 2019
Earth & The Environment
DEC 11, 2019
Methylmercury levels rising with climate change
Researchers from the University of New Hampshire have recently published a study in the journal Geochemical Perspectives Letters detailing the consequences...
DEC 11, 2019
Earth & The Environment
DEC 11, 2019
New geophysical phenomenon "stormquakes" discovered
What do you think when you hear the term “stormquake”? Perhaps it isn’t hard to conjure up an image in your mind of the meeting of an int...
DEC 11, 2019
Earth & The Environment
DEC 11, 2019
Implementing indigenous practices improves environmental management
It must not come as a surprise that indigenous peoples’ connections to Mother Earth often translate into a type of environmental stewardship that is ...
DEC 11, 2019
Plants & Animals
DEC 11, 2019
Triggerfish Are Lobsters' Worst Enemies
Lobsters, just like many other animals, follow migration patterns. They are often observed traveling in large packs, marching in straight lines across the...
DEC 11, 2019
Earth & The Environment
DEC 11, 2019
Canadians Face Increased Risk of Mortality Due to Air Pollution
Air pollution is associated with an increased risk of death in Canada—even when air pollution is below national and international air quality guideli...
Loading Comments...