These ‘missing charts’ may change the way you think about fossil fuel addiction

In Climate, Energy, Fossil Fuels, News, Unrenewable by

Cue sad trombone music. The National Observer examines BP’s energy review report and notices some basic missing charts, which—once reconstructed from the data—tell a different story from the general optimism many other outlets use when covering the rise of renewables.

The report highlights most of the important trends in global energy. Most. But one critical trend was nowhere to be found….

Conspicuously absent was the basic statistic on fossil fuels that I, as a climate reporter, was looking for: how much fuel is the world burning each year? Such a simple question, and the answer tells one of the most important stories in the world: are we finally turning the corner on our fossil fuel dependency?

To find that missing story, I needed to download and combine multiple BP data sheets, do the math, and then build my own charts to reveal the trends. Here (drumroll, please) are the “missing charts” and what they have to say to us…

I built three charts using the compiled BP fossil fuel data. This first chart shows the total energy consumed from burning fossil fuels each year.

Global fossil fuel consumption from 1990 to 2016