China Overtakes US as Biggest Energy Consumer

Date: June 8, 2011

Source: News Room

A new report says that China has overtaken the United States as the world's largest energy consumer. In its 60th annual Global Energy Review, oil company BP said that China's energy consumption rose by 11.2 percent last year, compared with 3.7 percent in the US. That moved China into the top spot, accounting for 20.3 percent of global demand, ahead of the US in second place with 19 percent. China's surge led a 5.6 percent increase in global energy demand, the biggest one-year jump since 1973. China was by far the world's largest consumer of coal, taking 48 percent. The US remained the largest consumer of oil with 21 percent of global demand, nearly double that of China. Demand for all forms of energy grew strongly in 2010 and increases in fossil fuel consumption suggest that global carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from energy use rose at their fastest rate since 1969.

"There were both structural and cyclical factors at work," said Bob Dudley, BP Chief Executive. "The cyclical factor is reflected in the fact that industrial production rebounded very sharply as the world recovered from the global downturn. Structurally, the increase reflects the continuing rapid economic growth in the developing world.

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