Insights by source

Whilst 2022 saw energy demand continue to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, legacy supply chain issues, along with conflict in Ukraine, continued to impact the global energy sector.

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primary energy icon Energy developments

• 2022 saw a 1% increase in total primary energy consumption taking it to around 3% above the 2019 pre-COVID level.

• Renewables’ (excluding hydroelectricity) share of primary energy consumption reached 7.5%, an increase of nearly 1% over the previous year.

• Fossil fuel consumption as a percentage of primary energy remained steady at 82%.

Carbon emissions icon Carbon emissions

• Carbon dioxide emissions from energy use, industrial processes, flaring and methane (in carbon dioxide equivalent terms) continued to rise to a new high growing 0.8% in 2022 to 39.3 GtCO2e, with emissions from energy use rising 0.9% to 34.4 GtCO2.

• In contrast, carbon dioxide emissions from flaring decreased by 3.8% and emissions from methane and industrial processes decreased by 0.2%.

Wind turbines

Oil icon Oil

• Brent crude oil prices averaged $101/bbl in 2022, its highest level since 2013.

• Oil consumption continued to increase, rising by 2.9 million barrels per day (b/d) to 97.3 million barrels per day (b/d), a smaller increase than was seen between 2020 and 2021. Consumption remained 0.7% below 2019 levels.

• Regionally, OECD consumption increased by 1.4 million b/d and non-OECD by 1.5 million b/d. Most of the growth came from jet/kerosene (0.9 million b/d) and diesel/gasoil (0.7 million b/d).

• Global oil production increased by 3.8 million b/d in 2022, with OPEC+ accounting for more than 60% of the increase. Among all countries, Saudi Arabia (1,182,000 b/d) and the US (1,091,000 b/d), saw the largest increases. Nigeria reported the largest decline in production (184,000 b/d) with production in Libya declining by 181,000 b/d.

• Refining capacity increased slightly by around 534,000 b/d last year driven by an increase in capacity in non-OECD countries.

Natural gas icon Natural gas

• Natural gas prices reached record levels in Europe and Asia in 2022, rising nearly threefold in Europe (TTF averaging $37/mmBtu) and doubling in the Asian LNG spot market (JKM averaging $34/mmBtu). US Henry Hub prices rose over 50% to average $6.5/mmBtu in 2022 – their highest annual level since 2008.

• Global natural gas demand declined by 3% in 2022 dropping just below the 4 Tcm mark achieved for the first time in 2021. Its share in primary energy in 2022 decreased slightly to 24% (from 25% in 2021).

• Global gas production remained relatively constant compared to 2021.

• LNG supply grew 5% (26 Bcm) to 542 Bcm in 2022, similar to 2021. LNG supply increases came mostly from North America (10 Bcm) and APAC (8 Bcm). All other regions made a positive contribution to LNG supply growth in 2022 (8 Bcm).

• The increase in global LNG demand was triggered by Europe (62 Bcm) in 2022. Countries in the Asia Pacific region reduced their LNG imports by 24 Bcm and those in South & Central America by 11 Bcm.

• Japan replaced China as the world’s largest LNG importer and accounted for close to 60% of global LNG demand growth in 2022. The Asia Pacific region accounted for around 65% of global LNG demand but fell 6.5% compared to 2021 whilst Europe increased its LNG imports by 57%.

• Overall natural gas pipeline net trade fell ~15% globally in 2022 (78 Bcm). European pipeline imports fell by 35% (82 Bcm), almost entirely attributable to supplies from Russia. Overall, Russian total pipeline exports fell 38%. The Middle East increased its pipeline exports by 12%. China increased its pipeline imports by 5 Bcm.

Coal icon Coal

• Coal prices reached record levels in 2022, with European prices averaging $294/tonne and the Japan CIF spot price averaging $225/tonne (increases of 145% and 45% over 2021 respectively).

• Coal consumption continued to increase, rising 0.6% on 2021 to 161 EJ; the highest level of coal consumption since 2014.

• The growth in demand was largely driven by China (1%) and India (4.1%). Their combined growth of 1.7 EJ was sufficient to offset declines elsewhere by 0.6 EJ.

• Coal consumption in both North America and Europe declined by 6.8% and 3.1% respectively. In 2022, OECD consumption was around 10% less than its 2019 pre-COVID level and non-OECD coal consumption over 6% above it.

• Global production increased by over 7% compared to 2021, reaching a record high of 175 EJ. China, India, and Indonesia accounted for over 95% of the increase in production.

front line workers

Renewables icon Renewables, hydro and nuclear

• Renewable power rose 14% in 2022 to reach 40.9 EJ. This was slightly below the previous year’s 16% increase.

• Solar and wind capacity continued to grow rapidly in 2022 recording a record increase of 266 GW. Solar account for 72% (192 GW) of the capacity additions.

• The largest portion of both solar growth and wind growth was in China accounting for about 37% and 41% of the global capacity additions respectively.

• Hydroelectricity generation increased by 1.1% in 2022 whilst output from nuclear fell by 4.4%.

electricity icon Electricity

• Global electricity generation increased by 2.3% in 2022 which was lower than the previous year's growth rate of 6.2%.

• Wind and solar reached a record high of 12% share of power generation in 2022 with solar recording 25% growth and wind power 13.5%. The combined generation from wind and solar once again surpassed that of nuclear energy.

• Coal remained the dominant fuel for power generation in 2022, with a stable share around 35.4%, marginally down from 35.8% in 2021.

• Natural gas in power generation remained stable in 2022 with a share of 22.7%.

• Renewables met 84% of electricity demand growth in 2022. 

Key minerals icon Key minerals

• Lithium carbonate prices rose 335% to average a record high of $47,000/tonne. Similarly, the price of cobalt increased 24% in 2021 to average $64,000/tonne.

• Lithium and cobalt production rose sharply by 21%.