pumping gasoline

Even as electric vehicles gain in popularity, we're told again and again that internal combustion engines aren't going away. While that may be true, it would still be nice to kick our addiction to gasoline. Pollution, international turmoil and energy insecurity are getting a bit tiresome. It's good news, then that Navigant Research is predicting a decline in the amount of gasoline we use.

In a report titled "Transportation Forecast: Global Fuel Consumption," Navigant Research concludes that gasoline consumption will begin to decline after 2021, and will decrease by four percent worldwide between 2014 and 2035. While it might not be time to break out the champagne yet, the forecast is promising. And it's not just a fluke or natural, cyclical event, either. This is the result of conscious effort by actual humans who are concerned about the effect gasoline use has on the Earth and its inhabitants.

"The anticipated effects of climate change are driving international cooperation on mitigation efforts," says Navigant Research analyst Scot Shepard, "including reducing oil consumption in the transportation sector. Markets for both vehicles and fuels have gradually begun to respond to these efforts, and alternative fuels - including electricity, natural gas, and biodiesel - are beginning to have an impact on global oil demand." Okay, maybe just a little champagne.

Navigant credits electric vehicles to a small extent for the eventual decline in gas use, as well as development of biofuels and the like. The group says, though, that the main factors are improvements in cars and the internal combustion engines they use, which lead to better fuel economy. Check out the press release from Navigant Research, below, or see more at the group's website.
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Worldwide Gasoline Consumption Will Fall by 4 Percent from 2014 to 2035
August 4, 2014

Gasoline consumption will start to decline after 2021, report concludes

The costs of dependence on oil for transportation, which affects energy security, environmental security, and economic stability, have become increasingly clear to governments around the world. As a result, a number of policies aimed at reducing oil consumption have been initiated in many countries, including subsidizing alternative fuels and alternative fuel vehicles, biofuels mandates, and higher fuel economy requirements for new vehicles. According to a new report from Navigant Research, gasoline consumption for road transportation will continue to rise through 2021, reaching 367.3 billion gallons a year, but then start to fall thereafter, declining to 348.1 billion gallons a year in 2035.

"The anticipated effects of climate change are driving international cooperation on mitigation efforts, including reducing oil consumption in the transportation sector," says Scott Shepard, research analyst with Navigant Research. "Markets for both vehicles and fuels have gradually begun to respond to these efforts, and alternative fuels ‑ including electricity, natural gas, and biodiesel ‑ are beginning to have an impact on global oil demand."

While the market for electric vehicles is growing at a healthy pace, according to the report, the most impactful fuel savings strategy is likely to come from fuel efficiency improvements in the conventional vehicle platform and the internal combustion engine (ICE). To meet the increased fuel economy requirements for new vehicles, automakers have made major investments in engine downsizing, reducing vehicle weights, and vehicle electrification.

The report, "Transportation Forecast: Global Fuel Consumption", analyzes the global road transportation fuels market by alternative fuel and vehicle segment (light duty vehicles and medium and heavy duty vehicles). Analysis and data are provided for the following fuels: gasoline, diesel, ethanol, biodiesel, drop-in biofuels, natural gas, liquefied petroleum gas, electricity, and hydrogen. Global market forecasts for energy, oil, and fuel consumption, segmented by country and vehicle segment, extend through 2035. An Executive Summary of the report is available for free download on the Navigant Research website.