Major increase in gas consumption in the US (half of world increase).
Global gas consumption accelerated in 2018, spurred by the US and China, which accounted for around two thirds of the additional consumption. US gas demand grew by 10% in 2018, the highest growth seen in the past 30 years, spurred by the power sector (+15 GW of new gas-fired power plants) and by buildings.
Gas consumption also accelerated in China (+18%) in line with its coal-to-gas substitution policy in the power and heating sector. Growth was also seen in India and South Korea thanks to sustained economic growth. However, consumption declined in Japan, as the restart of nuclear reactors reduced the needs for gas-fired power generation.
Gas consumption also continued to grow steadily in Russia (though at a slower pace than in 2017) and accelerated in Canada, Iran and Algeria.
Despite the economic growth, gas consumption declined in Europe – especially in Turkey, France, Germany and Italy – owing to higher temperatures, improved nuclear and hydropower availability as well as rising renewable power generation.
According to the Spanish power transmission system operator Red Eléctrica de España (REE), Spain added nearly 6.5 GW of new renewable power capacity in 2019 (6,456 MW), corresponding to a 13% increase in the renewable capacity. During 2019, 93 new solar PV power plants added 3,975 MW, while 86 new wind projects added 2,319 MW and 10 other renewable projects added 162 MW. Most of the new renewable capacity came from auctions held in 2017 (5,689 MW). This strong growth in the renewable capacity contributed to raise Spain's installed capacity by 5.6% at the end of 2019.
According to Eurostat, the share of renewable energy in the gross final energy consumption of the European Union (EU) rose from 17.5% in 2017 to 18% in 2018, progressing towards the target of 20% of renewable energy by 2020 and at least 32% by 2030.
According to the National Agency of Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels (ANP), Brazil’s oil production increased by 7.8% in 2019 to reach 1.018 Gbl (2.789 mb/d), including 634 mbl in pre-salt areas. Total gas production also increased significantly during 2019 (+9.5%).
According to preliminary data from the National Bureau of Statistics, China’s fossil fuel production continued to rise in 2019. China’s raw coal production increased by 4.2% in 2019, in line with the continuing of the supply-side structural reform. Coal imports also rose by 6.3%, benefiting from declining prices. The decline in crude oil production since 2015 reversed in 2019, as the major domestic oil fields had a stable production growth trend and crude oil production rose by 0.8%. In addition, crude oil imports rose by 9.5% and inputs to Chinese refineries rose by 7.6%. China's gas production soared by 9.8% in 2019, while imports rose by 6.9%. Finally, power generation increased by 3.5%.