World Energy Consumption changes from 1990 to 2008. Total energy consumption increased over 19 years 20% in the USA and 39% in the World and even 7% in Europe. It increased 146% in China.
All of the conservation and efficiency improvement efforts of the past years has slowed the growth in energy usage. The energy per capita in the US did decrease by 2% and increased by 1% in Europe but about 15% of the energy per capita was a shift of energy intensive manufacturing to China. There was improvement of GDP per kwh of about 1% per year.
The world economy will grow by about 70-80% by 2025. An increase of $50 trillion. 4-5% GDP growth per year needs to be in a viable and realistic plan.
Here is a list of 27 most effective actions to achieve energy conservation and savings from an environmental magazine. The list is from 2008. What is the adoption rate of these actions ? How much does it cost each household to adopt them ? What is the payback time for the energy saved from a more efficient refrigerator to pay for the energy to make the refrigerator ?
The biggest conservation and efficiency gains would come from rebuilding cities to be more dense. Shifting to denser downtown cores with taller skyscrapers. However, the maximum gains without decreasing wealth is increasing conservation and efficiency by about 2% per year and is usually about 1% per year.