The International Energy Agency (IEA) has released its Electricity Market Report, which states that the COVID-19 crisis will reduce global electricity demand in 2020 by 2 per cent. It also anticipates that electricity demand will grow by around 3 per cent in 2021, significantly weaker than the 7 per cent rebound that took place in 2010 after the global financial crisis.
Two-thirds of the additional demand in 2021 will take place in the Asia Pacific region, with most of the demand coming from China and India. These are expected to grow by 5.2 per cent (350 TWh) and 3.6 per cent (40 TWh) respectively.
The report predicts that China will be the only major economy to see higher electricity demand in 2020. However, its growth of 2 per cent will be well below its recent average of 6.5 per cent.
Coal-fired generation will fall by 5 per cent, the largest decrease on record; nuclear power generation by about 4 per cent; and gas-fired generation by 2 per cent. Overall, CO2 emissions from electricity generation are on course to fall by 5 per cent in 2020.
The report anticipates that in 2021, coal-fired generation will rise by 3 per cent, while gas-fired will increase output by 1 per cent, leading to a 2 per cent rise in CO2 emissions in 2021.