ExxonMobil Sees Gas Displacing Coal as World No 2 Energy Source

From Coal Guru

ExxonMobil Corporation said that Natural gas appears likely to supplant coal as the world’s second biggest energy source after crude oil by 2025.

Demand for gas will grow by about 65% through 2040 with 20% of worldwide production occurring in North America supported by growing supplies from shale and other unconventional sources.

Mr William M Colton ExxonMobil’s VP of corporate strategic planning said that “Today, the world consumes some 25 times the energy it used 200 years ago. It took over 100 years from the first oil well’s discovery until oil became the world’s No 1 energy source. Natural gas is poised to surge as modern renewables also grow.”

The report also predicted that North America will change to a net energy exporter from an importer by 2025. More than half of the growth in unconventional gas supplies will take place in North America providing a foundation for strong US economic growth with solid contributions from the energy, chemical, steel and manufacturing industries.

According to ExxonMobil’s 2013 outlook, Electricity demand will account for more than half the global energy demand increase over the next few decades, with gas, nuclear and renewable energy meeting more power generation demand as coal and oil meet less.

It said that a more than 40% increase in global energy demand related to transportation from 2010 to 2040 will come almost entirely from commercial sectors heavy duty, aviation, marine and rail as expanding economies and international trade stimulate more movement of goods.

Mr Colton said the 2013 forecast projects more gas penetration into transportation than its predecessors because lower prices make it more economically attractive. It sees the biggest growth here in fleets, and in using liquefied natural gas for long haul trucking. There will be significant opportunities, and we expect the market to drive this growth. We expect compressed natural gas to be marginal because it’s more difficult.

Gas to liquids looks somewhat better because the technology exists but its capital costs are high. You have to be confident that the gap between oil and gas prices will be persistent through a plant’s lifetime.

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