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Residential, commercial and industrial energy demand to 2040

Hydrocarbon Engineering,

Residential and commercial demand

Residential/commercial energy demand is projected to increase by more than 25% from 2010 to 2040. Commercial energy demand is expected to increase by approximately 45%; residential energy demand by more than 20%. Between 2010 and 2040, the number of households in the world is expected to increase by almost 50%, to 2.8 billion due to population growth, increasing living standards and the movement from rural to urban areas. Asia’s urbanisation rate is expected to increase from approximately 45 – 60% through 2040, and Africa’s from approximately 40% to almost 55%. Urbanisation increase residential energy demand because there are fewer people per household in urban settings and therefore fewer shared energy services.

While energy demand in the residential sector is projected to grow by more than 20% by 2040, that growth would have been closer to 50% were it not for projected gains in residential energy efficiency and the increasing share of developing country households. Efficiency gains due to improved building codes, more efficient appliances and the use of more efficient energy sources in developing countries are expected to lead to a 20% improvement in average per household energy use over the forecast period. Due to improved household efficiency, North America and Europe’s residential energy demand increase through 2040.

Industrial energy demand

Industrial energy demand is projected to increase by approximately 40% through 2040. Heavy industry and chemicals are expected to account for approximately 85% of this growth. Industrial activity is prominent in areas with access to affordable labour, raw materials, energy, capital, and a growing demand for goods. Since 1990, China has dominated industrial growth as its demand for steel, cement and manufactured products grew rapidly along with its urban population and economy. Over the next 25 years, Exxon expects industrial energy demand growth to shift toward the rest of the developing world as China’s economy matures – particularly to India, Brazil, and Saudi Arabia. Between 2010 and 2040, the share of industrial energy demand of India and the key growth countries is expected to exceed China’s share, increasing from 20% to approximately 30%.

Exxon expects China’s economy to continue to expand, but with a greater proportion of services and technologically advanced light manufacturing, and less heavy industry. China’s industrial energy demand is projected to peak during the forecast period and, by 2040, decline to a level only modestly higher than in 2013. In the developed countries, industrial energy demand is expected to grow slightly by 2025, as the US and Canada see an increase in manufacturing and chemicals due to growth in production of unconventional oil and gas.

Industrial energy intensity is a measure of the amount of energy needed to create a unit of GDP. Improvements in energy intensity are due to efficiency gains and structural shifts in the economy. Exxon expects industrial energy intensity in the developed world to improve at approximately 2%/y, as it did from 1995 to 2010. Average industrial energy intensity worldwide is expected to improve by 40% by 2040 compared to 2010 levels. The average amount of industrial energy demand per unit of economic output worldwide in 2040 is expected to be similar to the level that the US reached in 2005.

Adapted from a report by Emma McAleavey.

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