In 2010 the U.S. Energy Information Administration published its forecasts for 2019 on topics such as oil and natural gas production, oil imports, coal fired electricity generation, green house gas emissions and more.
And they were not just a little wrong, they were spectacularly off. For example, they predicted the U.S. would be importing over 8 million barrels of oil per day in 2019; in reality, the U.S. is a net exporter of oil in 2019. These were not small errors!
EIA predictions from 2010 for 2019 were way off:
- U.S. oil production at 6.1 million barrels/day; Actual is 12.5.
- U.S. oil imports at 8.1 million barrels/day; Actual is -0.1 (U.S. is a net exporter)
- Natural gas was to be 19.8 trillions of cubic feet; Actual is 30.6
- Coal was predicted to produce 2100 billion KWH of electricity; Actual is 1100
- Natural gas was predicted to produce 650 billion KWH of electricity; Actual is 1500 KWH.
- Renewables predicted to produce 736; Actual is 502
- Green house gas emissions from energy production were forecast at 5800 million metric tons; Actual is 5300.
Related: Electric utilities have cut their green house gas emissions by 40% since 2005. Conventional wisdom, of course, is that there will be no such progress unless the government takes strong actions. The reality, however, is quite a bit different than what people commonly believe.
Related: The amount of water consumed by today’s world is less than half what was forecast back in the 1970s to be consumed today.