Long-term energy forecasts have a poor track record. They have failed to accurately predict total energy demand, sector demand and energy prices. Attempts to improve accuracy by adding more factors to explain consumption and pricing has complicated the models without necessarily improving their results. This last of 3 articles on long-term energy forecasting focuses on why long-term energy forecasting is so difficult, ideas to improve it and suggested alternatives.
The Track Record is Poor for Predicting Long-Ter
It has been estimated that the plastics processing industry is responsible for 4% of global energy consumption. So any attempts to save energy by this industry are likely to lead to significant advantages.
In 2012, 288 million tons of plastic were produced worldwide, with most production centred in China (23.9%), Europe (20.4%) and NAFTA countries (19.9%).
Economic stability depends on the resilience of energy systems. So it’s no surprise that policy makers and users of critical infrastructure services are searching for solutions that increase the resilience of energy systems. But what is resilience? How can it be measured and improved? And how can energy systems be designed so that they are both resilient AND sustainable?
Resilience has a variety of interpretations and applications.
Offices typically take up around one-third of energy use of the total tertiary sector (offices, shops, hotels, restaurants, educational establishments and care institutions). So any attempt to save energy in offices will obviously have a highly significant effect on the total energy consumption in this sector.
Heating accounts for 20-40% of energy costs in a typical office environment, which means that there are big opportunities to make savings.
The implementation of some simple energy-saving measures in schools can reduce energy consumption, save money, improve conditions for staff and students, and cut carbon emissions.
Energy consumption in schools is quite atypical. School buildings are generally not used in the evenings and at night, nor during weekends and school holidays. Actually, they may only be used from approximately 8:00 to 16:00 for only 180 days a year, or 1440 hours/year.
Traditionally the benefits of energy efficiency have been focused on energy demand reduction and lower greenhouse gas emissions. However, there are many other areas in which clear benefits of energy efficiency have been documented.
Energy efficiency is in fact a major energy resource. Macroeconomists have stated that energy efficiency is the surest energy supply that exists. It could even be described as the largest or “first” fuel.