Renewables in demand – BP energy review

Renewable energies continued to grow rapidly in 2005, but still only comprise 3% of the world's total primary energy consumption, the BP Statistical Review of World Energy found.

Renewables are increasingly in demand, BP experts said in the review, published this week. While oil production grew at around 1% in 2005, wind power grew at a rate of 28.6%.

But despite the fast growth, wind power still only generates 0.7 % of the world’s electricity.

Wind power played an increasing role in electricity generation in some countries, with Denmark producing 16% of its electricity from wind, Spain – 8%, and Germany 5%.

“Energy consumers around the world are increasingly expressing their desire to consume energy that is both local and green,” according to the review, for which BP annually gathers data on global energy production and consumption.

Ethanol and biodiesel production rose by 10% in 2005, but in the end only amounted to about 0.4% of world oil consumption.

Large scale hydroelectric power production, which was found to grow at a rate of 4.2%, was not included in the definition of renewables for the purposes of the review. China remained the largest producer of hydroelectricity.

Overall growth in global energy use slowed in 2005 as hurricanes and political instabilities in the Middle East hit oil and gas supplies, the review found.

BP’s experts contributed the slower growth to “dramatic weather” in the US, which the survey found ravaged US gas markets even more than oil markets, “problems” in Iraq and a slowdown in Russian production.

Coal continued to grow fastest of all fuels mostly due to a growth of 10.9% in China, which consumes around 37% of total coal burnt globally, most of which it produces domestically.

BP chief executive Lord Browne pointed to widespread concern about energy security. “Capacity in most segments of the energy industry remains constrained and perceptions of geopolitical risk have increased.”

The BP Statistical Review of World Energy can be found at

Goska Romanowicz

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