Chart of the week: a seismic shift in energy markets

Global oil demand chart

Opec and the oil giants expect decades of growth “as they feed the energy needs of the world’s… middle classes”, say Jessica Shankleman and Hayley Warren on Bloomberg. But they may be missing “seismic shifts” in technology or policy that could nullify or crimp oil demand.

The International Energy Agency thinks oil demand could peak in 2020 given ongoing efficiency improvements that are reducing fuel waste; these could save six supertankers of oil a day. Electric cars and alternative fuels, such as biofuels and natural gas, could also slash consumption.