This slowdown was particularly evident in the US, Russia and India, each of which exhibited unusually strong growth in 2018.
China was the exception, with its energy consumption accelerating in 2019. As a result, China dominated the expansion in global energy markets â€“ contributing the largest increment to demand for each individual source of energy other than natural gas, where it was only narrowly surpassed by the US.
Despite the support from China, all fuels (other than nuclear) grew at a slower rate than their 10-year averages, with coal consumption declining for the fourth time in six years. Nevertheless, renewables still provided a record increment to primary energy and provided the largest contribution (41%) to growth in primary energy, with the level of renewable power generation exceeding nuclear power for the first time.
The slowdown in energy demand growth, combined with a shift in the fuel mix away from coal and toward natural gas and renewables, led to a significant slowing in the growth of carbon emissions, although only partially unwinding the unusually strong increase seen in 2018.
Energy prices fell on the whole, particularly for coal and gas where growth in production outpaced consumption leading to a build-up of inventories. Oil prices were a little lower.