The world is dependent on energy both for human wellbeing and society's continued development.
The world is dependent on energy both for human wellbeing and society's continued development. Energy use is however also one of the human systems that is most directly influenced by changes in climate, which makes it crucial to gain insight into the impacts of climate change on energy demand.
Most previous studies explored this topic for a single country or continent, or for a single sector (mostly households). In addition, researchers only employed climate projections from either a single, or just a few climate models. In this new study, the authors did a global analysis using temperature projections from 21 climate models, and population and economy projections for five socioeconomic scenarios. This information was fed into a statistical model to calculate changes in demand for three fuels and four economic sectors, to determine how energy demand would shift relative to today’s climate under modest and high-warming scenarios around 2050.
The findings indicate that, compared to baseline scenarios in which energy demand is driven by population and income growth alone, climate change increases the global demand for energy around 2050 by 11-27% with modest warming, and 25-58% with vigorous warming. Large areas of the tropics, as well as southern Europe, China, and the USA, are likely to experience the highest increases. The largest changes in demand are due to electricity needed for cooling and occur in the industry and service sectors of the economy.
Read more at International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis