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EIA says U.S. energy consumption will grow through 2050

March 8, 2022
Administration’s Annual Energy Outlook 2022 projects petroleum and liquid fuels will remain most-consumed source of energy

U.S. energy consumption will increase over the next 30 years as population and economic growth outpace gains in energy efficiency, according to projections from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).

In its Annual Energy Outlook 2022 (AEO2022), EIA projects that renewable energy will be the fastest-growing source of energy through 2050, but petroleum and liquid fuels will remain the most-consumed source of energy.

“Our baseline case projects that, without changes in laws and regulations, improvements in energy efficiency will slow the pace of growth in U.S. energy consumption, and technological progress and greater resource development will increase energy supply,” said Stephen Nalley, EIA’s acting administrator. “We look at a variety of cases and compare them to the baseline case to illustrate how the availability of energy resources, the rate of technology advancement, and other factors could shape future U.S. energy markets.”

EIA experts discussed the full findings of AEO2022 during a virtual event hosted by the Bipartisan Policy Center. The full report now is available on the EIA website.

Highlights of AEO2022 include:

  • Petroleum and natural gas remain the most-consumed sources of energy in the United States through 2050, but renewable energy is the fastest growing. Natural gas and renewable energy will continue to grow through 2050, with renewable energy growing fastest in all scenarios.
  • Wind and solar incentives, along with falling technology costs, support robust competition with natural gas for electricity generation, while the shares of coal and nuclear power decrease in the U.S. electricity mix. State and federal policies continue to provide significant incentive to invest in renewable resources for electricity generation and transportation fuels, while technological advancements will contribute to driving down costs and increasing competitiveness of renewables.
  • U.S. crude oil production reaches record highs, while natural gas production is increasingly driven by natural gas exports. U.S. production of oil and natural gas will be partly driven by continued global demand through 2050. In most cases, EIA projects continued growth in U.S. liquefied natural gas export capacity, which supports growth in U.S. natural gas production and exports.
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