Daily Energy Needs

Since the beginning of time, people have gradually consumed more and more energy alongside technology advancements. Consumption was initially around 3 kWh per day per person and was mostly used for nourishment. Because of the necessity and possibility of heating for warmth, consumption in prehistoric times rose to 6 kWh primary energy per day. In the Middle Ages, people in Europe wore more clothes and created more elaborate houses and churches, increasing the daily energy consumption to about 25 kWh. Today, we use less than 6 kWh for pure nourishment, with more than 12 kWh for the preparation and transportation of food. US and German citizens consumed in 2022 about 216 and 112 kWh per day, respectively.

The 2022 data on energy consumption (Statistical Review of World Energy of the Energy Institute) and population (PRB) show that the average daily energy consumption of a person in India is still 19.5 kWh. But China at 85 kWh is already above the world average and will consume approximately the same amount of energy as industrial nations in the next few decades. In 2022, the world primary energy consumption was 57.6 kWh per person for the world population of 8.0 billion people.

If the world population increases to 10 billion as expected, and all countries advance to match the present consumption of US, the world energy demand will eventually increase nearly fivefold.