The world’s biggest consumer of electricity is a family in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), according to a report from Deloitte.The average family in KSA used nearly 5 TWh of electric energy in their homes in 2008. This beats the 4.5 TWh average in the U.S. and for the rest of the GCC.
Deloitte calculated this number by looking at the per capita energy use and a breakdown of consumption patterns. While the U.S. exceeds Saudi Arabia in per capita energy use, American consumption is only 33% residential. By contrast KSA spends over 50% of energy on residential use.
This makes sense of course: Saudi Arabia is both hotter and richer than Arizona, which means a lot of money for air conditioning. They also watch a lot of TV, with high levels of unemployment, particularly among women. Furthermore they enjoy some of the world’s cheapest energy.
Deloitte predicts even higher consumption going forward:
What is worth noting here is that the per capita electricity demand in the GCC countries is expected to increase at a faster rate than their counterparts in the US. According to the ‘2010 International Energy Outlook’ issued by the US Energy Information Administration (EIA), the per capita electricity consumption during the period 2007-2035 in the GCC is likely to increase at an annual rate of 2.5% , with a large part of this rate attributed to a growing population, as opposed to 0.8% in the US. So we can expect that in a matter of a few years, GCC residents may well be outright leaders in the per capita residential electricity use race. [Note: We calculated from Deloitte’s data that KSA residents already are the outright leaders.]
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