BP Energy Outlook: Disposable plastics bans 'will impact oil demand'

22 February, 2018, 20:09 | Author: Darnell Taylor
  • BP Sees Self-driving Electric Vehicles Crimping Oil Demand By 2040

The increased number of electric cars on the world's roads is projected to be offset by a doubling in overall global demand for auto travel, with petrol or diesel vehicles still forecast to account for most journeys in the ground transportation sector.

Under BP's Evolving Transition scenario, which assumes that policies and technology continue to evolve at a speed similar to that seen in the recent past, some 30% of vehicle kilometres are powered by electricity by 2040 from nearly zero in 2016.

The Outlook, which came out this week (February 20th 2018), forecasts demand for crude to reach a high of 110 million barrels per day between 2035 and 2040.

In its benchmark annual Energy Outlook, BP forecast a 100-fold growth in electric vehicles by 2040.

Dale added that increasing environmental pressures on single-use plastics could dampen growth in petrochemicals "quite materially", reducing oil consumption by a further 2m barrels per day by 2040.

However, due to their higher intensity of use, BP forecasts they will account for around 30% of total passenger vehicle kilometres.

"The suggestion that rapid growth in electric cars will cause oil demand to collapse just isn't supported by the basic numbers - even with really rapid growth", says Spencer Dale, BP group chief economist. Consumption is now around 97 million barrels per day. Wind and solar have been growing so competitive that government subsidies likely will be gradually phased out by the mid-2020s.

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BP sees this strong growth as being enabled by the steep decreases in cost seen primarily by wind and solar.

Travel demand will more than double over the period as economies in countries such as China and India grow.

Looking beyond power generation to primary energy consumption, natural gas will grow rapidly over the course of BP's forecast.

Moving ahead, the oil giant said it expects the global energy mix to be the most diverse the world has ever seen by 2040, with oil, gas, coal and non-fossil fuels each contributing around a quarter.

But carbon emissions will continue to rise, "signalling the need for a comprehensive set of actions to achieve a decisive break from the past", the report said.

If world leaders choose to take a different tack, the outcome could look very different.



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