'Oil era is far from over,' says IEA's annual report

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A more widespread use of electric cars will not be enough to consign oil to the past, said the energy agency's executive director, Fatih Birol.

The IEA's 2017 World Energy Outlook finds that global energy markets will be shaped by four major trends over the next three decades: The United States will become the world's leading producer of oil and natural gas; renewable energy, led by a major expansion of solar power in China and India, will experience rapid growth; the share of electricity - and electric vehicles - in the energy mix will expand; and China's continuing economic expansion will increasingly be fueled by clean energy.

Global oil demand is expected to keep rising over the next two decades, albeit at a steadily decreasing pace, according to a new report released Tuesday by the International Energy Agency. The Paris-based watchdog casts doubt over the state of the sector, especially as a number of high-profile players such as Royal Dutch Shell Plc. and Total SA have reduced their exposure to Alberta.

"Over the same period, USA gas companies ramped up their exports to Canada and Mexico, pushing net U.S. imports of pipeline gas down to around 25 bcm in 2016, compared with 80 bcm some ten years earlier", IEA economists said.

"While other major companies continue to maintain a presence in oil sands operations, it remains an open question whether the exit of these companies will impact prospects for oil sands development over the longer term", the IEA said.

Climate activists said the IEA report is too negative, but added that it highlights the need for more action to combat climate change.

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Global demand is forecast to be 30 percent higher by 2040, but still half as much as it would be without efficiency improvements.

Canada could still play a role as China's long-held fears for its energy security means it would seek to diversify its sources of supply.

It kept its estimate for this year at 3.08 million bpd.

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said in October that the deal was working and demand was moving closer to the level of supply, but extraordinary action was needed for further rebalancing.

"The reality is that even after some modest reductions to growth, non-OPEC production will follow this year's 700,000 bpd growth with 1.4 million bpd of additional production in 2018 and next year's demand growth will struggle to match this", it's monthly report read.

After an upbeat performance last week, oil prices edged lower for a second day Tuesday.

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