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EXXON’S DELUSION: 2040 Outlook Shows Fossils Supplying 77%, Renewables 4% of Global Demand

Minale Tattersfield/flickr
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Minale Tattersfield/flickr

Oil, natural gas, and coal will supply 77% of the world’s energy needs in 2040, while wind, solar, and biofuels will account for only 4%, in the fossil fantasy world envisioned in this year’s edition of ExxonMobil’s annual Outlook on Energy.

Oil will “remain the world’s primary energy source, fulfilling one-third of all demand,” the report states. “Broad-based deployment of cost-effective carbon capture and sequestration has the potential to make a massive impact on the world’s greenhouse gas levels,” Exxon adds on its website.

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With the world population expected to grow to nine billion by 2040, Exxon expects global energy demand to grow 25%, with India and China accounting for 45% of the increase. It sees transport energy demand up 25%, as well, with commercial transport increasing 50%.

Yet, against this sobering background, Exxon forecasts that global greenhouse gas emissions will rise by only 10%, peaking in the 2030s and then declining, because of improvements in the efficiency of buildings, transport, industry, and power generation,” Climate News Network reports. “The report states that by 2040 natural gas will provide 25% of all energy needs, and that the 85% of natural gas resources that it says are still untapped will provide enough energy to last for more than 200 years” at today’s rates of consumption.

The low estimate for renewables will surprise many experts, who point to the rapidly falling prices and rising output of wind and solar power, in particular, as evidence of their growing market appeal and potential to deliver, not least in remote and off-grid applications,” writes CN Net’s Alex Kirby.

Exxon also states its faith in the ultimate success of the controversial and still commercially unproven carbon capture and sequestration process,” Kirby notes. But “despite some recent advances in the technology, it is far from certain that it could work reliably and affordably at the scale needed.