New surge in US gas production, accounting for nearly 60% of the global growth.
The USA, the largest gas producer, accounted for over half of the 2019 global increase, followed by Russia, Australia, China and Iran. US domestic gas production rose by more than 10%, triggered by new developments in shale formations in Texas and in Pennsylvania. In addition, new gas and LNG export capacities and a strong demand from the power sector contributed to raise US gas production.
Gas production also continued to rise steadily in Russia (+3.4%) and in Australia (+18%), pushed by the development of LNG projects (full operation for projects completed in 2018 or commissioned in 2019) and by domestic demand.
Gas production continues decreasing in Europe (-5.7%), as maintenance and outages reduced output in Norway (-5.7%) and as the Netherlands kept on cutting the Groningen gas production (-13%). Gas production also remained quite stable in Latin America, despite a 5% increase in Argentina.
According to the European Union (EU) Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators (ACER), the amount of cross-border capacity available for trade among Member States remains insufficient to meet the minimum EU target of 70% by 2020. Cross-zonal capacity increased by 3% in 2019 compared to 2018 due to border-specific improvements (Poland-Czech Republic/Germany/Slovakia, Austrian borders, Greece-Italy, Bulgaria-Romania and Germany-Denmark). Moderate decreases, compared to 2018, were observed at the Swiss and Norwegian borders (-6%) and at a smaller scale in Italy North and Nordic regions (-2%). In addition, several Member States continue to use national capacity mechanisms, even if they do not always face an adequacy problem.
According to the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre, global CO2 emissions from energy combustion increased by 0.9% to 38 GtCO2 in 2019, driven by China (+3.4%, accounting for 30% of global emissions) and India (+1.6%, 7% of global emissions). Meanwhile, Japan (3% of global emissions) reduced its energy-related CO2 emissions by 2.1%, the United States (13% of total emissions) by 2.6% and Russia (5% of total emissions) by 0.8%.
According to the European Commission, primary energy consumption declined by 0.7% in 2018 (-0.1% only for final energy consumption), which is insufficient to meet the 2020 targets. The highest annual reductions in primary energy consumption were posted in Belgium, Austria and Greece, whereas the largest increases were observed in Estonia, Latvia and Luxembourg. Between 2005 and 2018, primary energy consumption decreased in all Member States except Estonia, Cyprus, Latvia and Poland. Primary energy intensity fell in all Member States between 2005 and 2018; however, it grew in Denmark, Estonia and Luxemburg in recent years (between 2015 and 2018).
According to the Swiss government, final energy consumption in Switzerland slightly increased in 2019 (+0.3%) due to cooler temperatures, economic growth (+0.9%), demographic growth (+0.7%) and increasing fleet of motor vehicles (+0.8%). This rising trend was offset by continued energy efficiency and substitution effects.