Washington, July 26 (IANS) Over the next three decades, world energy consumption is projected to increase by 56 percent through 2040, driven by growth in the developing world, including India and China, the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) said in its newly released International Energy Outlook 2013.
The report Thursday found that world energy use may increase from 534 quadrillion British thermal units (Btu) in 2010 to 820 quadrillion Btu in 2040. One quadrillion Btu is equal to 172 million barrels of crude oil.
"Rising prosperity in China and India is a major factor in the outlook for global energy demand," said EIA Administrator Adam Sieminski, adding that "these two countries combined account for half the world's total increase in energy use through 2040".
The report also found that energy use in countries outside the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) will increase by 90 percent, while in OECD countries, the increase is merely 17 percent.
With respect to energy production, the report described renewable energy and nuclear power as the world's fastest-growing energy sources, each increasing by 2.5 percent per year, but fossil fuels will continue to supply almost 80 percent of world energy use through 2040.
And natural gas will be the fastest growing fossil fuel in the outlook, with the US and Russia together accounting for nearly one-third of the total increase in world gas production.
In the US, one of the keys to increasing natural gas production is the advances in the application of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing technologies, which are necessary to unlock the shale gas and contribute to a near doubling of total US technically recoverable natural gas resource estimates over the past decade.