China Passes U.S. as World’s Biggest Energy Consumer

July 26, 2010 at 8:00 am

July 20 (Bloomberg) — China overtook the U.S. as the world’s biggest energy user last year, emphasizing that developing nations are driving global growth, according to the International Energy Agency.

China consumed 2,252 million metric tons of oil equivalent in 2009 in the form of crude, coal, natural gas, nuclear power and renewable sources, IEA Chief Economist Fatih Birol said yesterday. That exceeded the 2,170 million tons used by the U.S.

“It’s one of those major turning points,” Tilak Doshi, the chief economist at the Energy Studies Institute at the National University of Singapore, said in a phone interview. “China is growing by leaps and bounds. You’ve got OECD countries where you’re talking about oil demand peaking, meanwhile the emerging countries like China and India will keep growing their energy demand.”

Source: Bloomberg BusinessWeek
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