What Powers the World?

This week we have an area plot and a classical scatter to illustrate the energy mix of the world over time. According to planete energies, energy mix refers to the combination of the various primary energy sources used to meet energy needs in a given geographic region. It includes fossil fuels (oil, natural gas and coal), nuclear energy and the various sources of renewable energy such as bioenergies, hydro, wind, solar, geothermal.

Data comes from the BP Statistical Review of World Energy 2021 | 70th edition and Our World in Data.

In 2020, primary energy consumption decreased for the first time since 2009. This was due to the corresponding reductions on the three main sources of energy Oil, Coal and Gas usage. Note that total consumption has decrease only in two (2009, 2020) occasion over 70 years!

  • There is no doubt that fossil fuels (Oil, Coal, and Gas) are still moving the world. They account for almost 84% in the global energy mix, followed by Hydro (6.9%), Nuclear (4.3%), Wind (2.6%), Solar (1.4%), and other renewables (<1%)
  • Oil continues to be the top source in the mix with a 31% of the total. However, its share has decrease consistently since 1973 when it reached a peak making for almost 50% of the total energy consumption
  • Coal is the second biggest contributor in the mix with a 27% of the total. This is considerably lower than the 42% from 1965. However, it is still a significant part of the mix despite all efforts to transitioning to cleaner and more sustainable energy sources
  • Gas share has increase consistently going from a 15% in 1965 to around 25% in 2020
  • The share of Hydro has been around 5.5% and 7% consistently since 1965

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