Global oil demand could peak by the end of the next decade even as global economic growth climbs.
The latest downward revision to forecasts, from consulting firm McKinsey, could leave major new investments uneconomic if demand for energy fails to meet expectations.
McKinsey said it has cut its forecast for growth in demand to 0.8pc a year to 2040, “well below mainstream base case perspectives”, including its own estimate of 1.1pc made last year.
Demand for oil is expected to grow even more slowly beyond 2025, with the research pointing to a possible peak of 100m barrels a day by 2030, from current levels of 94m.
The industry is mired in debt after the plunge in oil prices in recent years.
McKinsey’s Occo Roelofsen said despite an expected increase in global population of around 36pc, and a doubling in global gross domestic product (GDP), shifting energy sector dynamics are set to depress energy demand.
“ This change is driven by three factors: first, overall GDP growth is structurally lower as the population ages; second, the global economy is shifting away from energy-intense industry towards services; and third, energy efficiency continues to improve significantly,” he said. “Peak oil demand could be reached around 2030. ”
Meanwhile growth in electricity demand will outstrip other sources of energy by more than two to one, due to the steady “electrification” of building and industry in China and India.
Almost 80pc of the capacity needed to meet this increase will be from solar and wind power, McKinsey predicts.
Source: The TelegraphPrevious Next