This is Part 3 of the World Energy Annual Report in 2018. This part of the Annual Report provides updated analysis of world natural gas production and consumption, evaluates the future prospect of world natural gas supply and considers the implications of peak natural gas production for global economic growth.
Natural gas is in a relatively early phase of depletion. According to the German Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources, world cumulative natural gas production up to 2016 was 117 trillion cubic meters, world natural gas reserves were 197 trillion cubic meters, and world natural gas resources were 643 trillion cubic meters (BGR 2017, Table A-15). BGR defines “resources” as “proven amounts of energy resources which cannot currently be exploited for technical and/or economic reasons, as well as unproven but geologically possible energy resources which may be exploitable in future” (BGR 2017, Glossary). According to the BP Statistical Review of World Energy, world natural gas reserves at the end of 2017 were 194 trillion cubic meters (166 billion tons of oil equivalent).
World Historical and Projected Natural Gas Production, 1980-2050
This report uses official reserves, official projections, or energy research institution estimates to establish the ultimately recoverable natural gas resources for the world’s ten largest natural gas producers. For the rest of the world (the world total less the ten largest natural gas producers), this report uses Hubbert linearization to establish the ultimately recoverable natural gas resources.
Figures are placed at the end of each section.
Natural Gas Consumption by Major Economies, 1990-2017
According to the BP Statistical Review of World Energy, world natural gas consumption was 3,156 million tons of oil equivalent (3,670 billion cubic meters) in 2017. Between 2007 and 2017, world natural gas consumption grew at an average annual rate of 2.2 percent.
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