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Quick Energy Facts

January 3, 2009

When T. Boone Pickens–an 80 year old billionaire oil man– is taking huge investments in wind farms and spending $60 million on a media and PR campaign, you know something huge must be going on.

I decided that I wasn’t sufficiently literate in the obvious energy crisis that’s accelerating.  I asked my energy expert friend who works at what he recommended as a good starting place for a non-expert.  He recommended Paul Roberts’ The End of Oil.

Here are a few striking facts from the prologue:

Sources of global energy in 2005:

  • 40%  –> Oil
  • 26% –>  Coal
  • 24% –> Natural Gas
  • 10%  –> Other

America is:

  • 5% of global population
  • 25% of global energy consumption

The American consumer lifestyle is

  • 2X more energy intensive the Japanese and the Germans
  • 10X more energy intensive than the global average

From 2005-2035 the world will require 2X more energy

  • Daily demand for oil will increase from 80 to 140 million barrels per day
  • Natural gas demand will increase 120%
  • Coal demand will increase 60%Demand for electricity is growing disproportionally faster.  By 2020, electricity demand will be 70% higher than in 2005.
  • 1.5 billion people do not have access to electricity. This is the significant dividing lines between the “haves” and he “have nots” that causes many of the other symptoms and problems of rural 3rd world poverty.   The people who live in these pre-industrial exasperatingly poor conditions have absolutely no hope of improving their lot until they get placed on the electrical grid.  For perspective 1.5 billion people is 5X the size of American population.
  • Iraq supplied America with 10% of our oil imports in at the start of the war.
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