Are we decoupling energy consumption from economic growth?

Policy Question
Indicator codes: Outlook 049

Key messages

(05 Jul 2010)

Expected 11% increase in the primary energy consumption by 2030 is much lower than the GDP growth over the same period (71%). Thus, energy intensity (i.e. ratio between primary energy consumption and GDP) improves by 1.7 % per year up to 2030 after having seen an improvement of 1.4% per year during 1990 - 2005, including a period of rapid improvements in the 1990s (1.8% per year). There has been a slowing down of energy intensity improvements in the earlier years of this decade, following sluggish economic growth with lower capital turn-over towards energy efficient equipment. Energy intensity improvements are driven by structural change towards services and lighter industries as well as by efficiency improvements in all sectors.

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