India to Witness Largest Energy Demand Globally by 2050, Power for ACs to Spike Nine-Fold: Report

According to the latest 'World Energy Outlook' report by International Energy Agency, the total power consumption in India in the next three decades would exceed whole of Africa today.

New Delhi: With the rising number of household air conditioners, India is set to see by 2050 a nine-fold spike in terms of electricity required for running them and will exceed the total power consumption in the whole of Africa today, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said in its latest report.

In the coming three decades, India will see the largest energy demand growth of any country or region in the world, PTI cited IEA’s latest World Energy Outlook as saying.

According to the projections, India’s energy supply is set to rise from 42 exajoules (EJ) in 2022 to 53.7 EJ in 2030, and 73 EJ in 2050 under its stated policy scenarios. It would touch 47.6 EJ by 2030 and 60.3 EJ by 2050 as per announced pledges.

India has witnessed, according to IEA, 700 heatwave events in the last five decades, which led to 17,000 deaths. Therefore, air conditioner ownership in India would go up massively in the coming decades with rising incomes. Geographical and meteorological conditions would also contribute to this spike. In fact, the number of air conditioners since 2010 has tripled, to reach 24 units per 100 households.

“The impact of cooling needs on electricity consumption is already clear. Electricity demand is sensitive to temperatures, and in India’s case, there is a sharp increase in demand as temperatures cross the 25-degree Celsius threshold…,” said IEA in its report.

Continuing further, it said, “Household air conditioner ownership is estimated to expand ninefold by 2050 across the IEA scenarios, outpacing the growth in ownership of every other major household appliance including televisions, refrigerators, and washing machines.”

The IEA report also said India is moving towards a dynamic new phase as part of its energy development marked by a long-term net zero emissions ambition, increased regulatory sophistication, a focus on clean energy deployment, and the creation of domestic clean energy technology supply chains.

Similarly, the demand for oil is estimated to go up from 5.2 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2022 to 6.8 million bpd in 2030 and 7.8 million bpd in 2050 under the stated policy scenario. As per announced pledges, the demand would shoot up to 6.2 million bpd in 2030 and 4.7 million bpd in 2050.