STORY Aug 09, 2018

The world’s largest economies have been using energy more efficiently

Half of the world’s twenty largest energy consuming economies have improved their energy efficiency by more than 2 percent every year since 2010. Efficiency is measured by “energy intensity” – the amount of energy required to produce one dollar’s worth of goods and services (GDP). Energy intensity improves when less energy is required to produce the same goods and services, or when more goods and services are produced given the same amount of energy. Sustainable Development Goal 7 calls for global improvements in energy efficiency and globally, energy intensity has fallen by one third since 1990.

Of the top 20 energy consumers, only two countries have increased their energy intensity since 2010: Brazil by 1.2 percent and Iran by 3.5 percent annually, measured by compound annualized growth rate (CAGR). Since 2010, China saw a reduction of 5.1 percent annually, while Japan, Turkey, United Kingdom and Indonesia all reduced their energy consumption by more than 4 percent per year.