Industry CO2 Emissions

Nearly a third of the world’s energy consumption and 36% of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions are attributable to manufacturing industries. The large primary materials industries, i.e., chemical, petrochemicals, iron and steel,cement, paper and pulp, and other minerals and metals, account for more than two-thirds of this amount.


Overall, industry’s use of energy has grown by 61% between 1971 and 2004, albeit with rapidly growing energy demand in developing countries and stagnating energy demand in OECD countries. However, this analysis shows that substantial opportunities to improve worldwide energy efficiency and reduce CO2 emissions remain. Where, how and by how much? These are some of the questions this analysis tries to answer.
This is a pioneering global analysis of the efficiency with which energy is used in the manufacturing industry. It reveals how the adoption of advanced technologies already in commercial use could improve the performance of energy-intensive industries.

It also shows how manufacturing industry as a whole could be made more efficient through systematic improvements to motor systems, including adjustable speed drives; and steam systems, including combined heat and power (CHP); and by recycling materials.

The findings demonstrate that potential technical energy savings of 25 to 37 exajoules1 per year are available based on proven technologies and best practices. This is equivalent to 600 to 900 million tonnes (Mt) of oil equivalent per year or one to one and a half times Japan’s current energy consumption.

These substantial savings potentials can also bring financial savings. Improved energy efficiency contributes positively to energy security and environmental protection and helps to achieve more sustainable economic development. The industrial CO2 emissions reduction potential amounts to 1.9 to 3.2 gigatonnes per year, about 7 to 12% of today’s global CO2 emissions. Industry CO2 Emissions

The estimates employ powerful statistical tools, called “indicators", which measure energy use based on physical production. This study sets out a new set of indicators that balance methodological rigour with data availability. These indicators provide a basis for documenting current energy use, analysing past trends, identifying technical improvement potentials, setting targets and better forecasting of future trends. The advantages of this approach include that these indicators:

• are not influenced by price fluctuations, which facilitates trend analysis. In detail, these indicators provide a closer measure of energy efficiency.

• can be directly related to process operations and technology choice.

• allow a well-founded analysis of efficiency improvement potentials.Industry CO2 Emissions
This study builds on other IEA work on energy indicators, a series of workshops and dialogue with experts from key industries, a comprehensive analysis of available data and an extensive review process. The IEA Implementing Agreement on Industrial Energy-Related Technologies and Systems and individual experts from around the world provided valuable input.

One important conclusion is that more work needs to be done to improve the quality of data and refine the analysis. Much better data is needed, particularly for iron and steel, chemicals and petrochemicals, and pulp and paper. This study is presented for discussion and as a prelude to future work by the IEA. Industry CO2 Emissions

Key Trends

Overall, industrial energy use has been growing strongly in recent decades. The rate of growth varies significantly between sub-sectors. For example, chemicals and petrochemicals, which are the heaviest industrial energy users, doubled their energy and feedstock demand between 1971 and 2004, whereas energy consumption for iron and steel has been relatively stable.

Much of the growth in industrial energy demand has been in emerging economies. China alone accounts for about 80% of the growth in the last twenty five years. Today, China is the world’s largest producer of iron and steel, ammonia and cement. Industry CO2 Emissions

Efficiency has improved substantially in all the energy-intensive manufacturing industries over the last twenty-five years in every region. This is not surprising. It reflects the adoption of cutting-edge technology in enterprises where energy is a major cost component. Generally, new manufacturing plants are more efficient than old ones. The observed trend towards larger plants is also usually positive for energy efficiency. The concentration of industrial energy demand growth in emerging economies, where industrial energy efficiency is lower on average than in OECD countries means, however, that global average levels of energy efficiency in certain industries, e.g. cement, have declined less than the country averages over the past twenty-five years.

Broadly, it is the Asian OECD countries, Japan and Korea that have the highest levels of manufacturing industry energy efficiency, followed by Europe and North America. This reflects differences in natural resource endowments, national circumstances, and energy prices, average age of plant, and energy and environmental policy measures. Industry CO2 Emissions
The energy and CO2 intensities of emerging and transition economies show a mixed picture. Where production has expanded, industry may be using new plant with the latest technology. For example, the most efficient aluminium smelters are in Africa and some of the most efficient cement kilns are in India. However, in some industries and regions where production levels have stalled, manufacturers have failed to upgrade to most efficient technology. For example, older equipment remains dominant in parts of the Russian Federation and Ukraine.

The widespread use of coal in China reduces its energy efficiency, as coal is often a less efficient energy source than other fuels due to factors such as ash content and the need for gasification. In China and India, small-scale operations with relatively low efficiency continue to flourish, driven by transport constraints and local resource characteristics, e.g. poor coal and ore quality. The direct use of low grade coal with poor preparation is a major source of inefficiency in industrial processes in these countries.Industry CO2 Emissions

1. One exajoule (EJ) equals 1018 joules or 23.9 Mtoe.



Material is sourced from the International Energy Agency 2007, Tracking Industrial Energy Efficiency and CO2 Emissions.

privacy policy