Recent trends in the OECD: energy and CO2 emissions 2016

Even as total OECD energy production rose 4% in 2014 to a record high, energy consumption among the member countries fell, as did CO2 emissions from fuel combustion, new IEA data reveal. The latest detailed official statistics for the 34 countries in the Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development add to the IEA finding that world energy-related CO2 emissions held steady in 2014 despite economic growth, the first such decoupling on a worldwide basis in the 40 years the Agency has provided information on emissions. The decoupling is particularly acute among OECD countries, where emissions fell 1.4% in 2014, to 11.9 gigatonnes. That is only slightly more than OECD emissions in 2009 despite the countries’ 10% economic growth over the period. The leading factor in the recent decoupling is a decline in the energy intensity of OECD countries’ economies, which is the result of greater energy efficiency and warmer seasons among other factors. Another contributor is reduced emissions per kilowatt-hour in electricity generation, the sector responsible for two-fifths of energy-related CO2 in OECD.