"Looking at the full year, we explore a scenario that quantifies the energy impacts of a widespread global recession caused by months-long restrictions on mobility and social and economic activity. Within this scenario, the recovery from the depths of the lockdown recession is only gradual and is accompanied by a substantial permanent loss in economic activity, despite macroeconomic policy efforts," the report said.
"The result of such a scenario is that energy demand contracts by 6%, the largest in 70 years in percentage terms and the largest ever in absolute terms. The impact of Covid‑19 on energy demand in 2020 would be more than seven times larger than the impact of the 2008 financial crisis on global energy demand," the report said.
The IEA expects that advanced economies will witness the biggest declines, with a 9-percent and 11-percent drop in the energy demand in the United States and the European Union, respectively.
According to the IEA, the CO2 emissions will sink by 8 percent, the oil demand by 9 percent and the coal demand by 8 percent.
"Renewables demand is expected to increase because of low operating costs and preferential access to many power systems. Recent growth in capacity, some new projects coming online in 2020, would also boost output," the report noted.
Within the context, low-carbon sources are expected to ensure 40 percent of global electricity generation and coal will account for 34 percent.
As a result, this trend will affect demand for electricity from coal and natural gas, the combined share of which in the global power mix is expected to fall by three percentage points in 2020 — the highest drop since 2001. Meanwhile, coal-fired power generation is set to decrease by more than 10 percentage points in 2020.
However, the increase in renewables demand is set to be lower than in previous years. Nuclear power demand is expected to fall by three percentage points in 2020 from the all-time high it reached in 2019. In addition, global demand for biofuels is set to fall substantially in 2020 as restrictions on transport and travel amid COVID-19 reduce road transport fuel demand, including for blended fuels.
The report added that natural gas demand is expected to decline by 5 percentage points in 2020 following 10 years of uninterrupted growth, marking the largest recorded year-on-year drop in consumption.
In general, the report established that as of April, each month of worldwide lockdown reduces annual global energy demand by about 1.5 percentage points.