OPEC unconvinced by electric car future

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has issued a 407-page report that is underwhelmed by the future of electric cars and a global shift towards green energy.

Its World Oil Outlook claims that fossil fuels will still make up 78% of the world’s energy in 2040 and that global demand for crude oil will increase five-fold in that time, from 18m barrels a day to 110m barrels.

It also predicts that emissions of CO2 will carry on rising despite what was agreed by 190 countries at the Paris climate summit.

This is partly based on its view that electric cars will struggle to gain traction in the market.

It argues that cost, range and unreliable batteries will prevent electric cars gaining a substantial foothold in the market, claiming that 94% of all the cars on the road in 2040 will still run on petrol and diesel.

‘Without a technology breakthrough, battery electric vehicles are not expected to gain significant market share in the foreseeable future,’ the report said.

However, technology companies like Apple and Google are committed to developing electric car solutions, while a host of major car manufacturers are also investing substantially in this technology.

Among them, Ford has set aside $4.5bn for the manufacture of electric and hybrid cars, while Toyota, the world’s biggest car company, wants to end all production of petrol and diesel cars by 2050.

Contrary to OPEC’s findings, Goldman Sachs has predicted battery-driven cars to capture 22% of the market inside 10 years, with battery prices falling by as much as 60% and range increasing by up to 70%.