INTL : Energy and economic growth - General news news

INTL : Energy and economic growth

Published on General news  |  January 13, 2011, 10:08

According to a U.S. study, the main obstacle to economic growth is the amount of power available.

Study on the relationship between economic growth and overall quantity of energy available, it establishes a strong correlation between those two dates, both globally and on a smaller scale, nationwide.

Following research, the authors reached a conclusion, namely: energy consumption directly limit economic activity. An increase in "enormous" energy supply will be required for responding to the growing demand, because it provided a global population growth in coming years. This will help developing countries without compromising standard of living in most developed countries.

The study, using a macroeconomic approach, was based on data from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and World Resources Institute and was conducted by a team of ecologists, led by James H. Brown, researcher at the University of New Mexico.

The team found that relationship between energy consumption per person and GDP (gross domestic product) per person was the same type as the one between an animal's weight and its energy consumption, generated by metabolism.

For Brown, this similarity is real: cities and countries, like animals, have metabolisms that burn the fuel, to mentain and develop theirself.

The study also shows that the relative variables of living standards, such as the proportion of doctors in a population, the number of televisions per person or infant mortality rate, are equally correlated with energy consumption per person and gross domestic product (GDP) per person.

Also, the researchers calculated that in 2050 will be to produce 16 times more energy (Earth's population will be 9 billion people, according to O.N.U. projections) to ensure the entire population a living standard equivalent to that of the United States today.

Noting that 85% of mankind's energy currently comes from fossil fuels, researchers emphasize the importance of developing alternative energies and reject the view of many economists who believe that technological innovation can avoid the lack of resources.

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