Expand chart
Adapted from a Resources for the Future report; Chart: Axios Visuals 

A new online tool offers an interactive, apples-to-apples comparison of long-term global energy outlooks issued by intergovernmental bodies, major oil companies and others.

Why it matters: These detailed projections and scenarios inform policymakers, analysts, activists and really anyone trying to grapple with where the world might be headed.

But, but, but: A big challenge is that it's tough to compare big reports on the future of various fuels, and global or regional demand from parties like the International Energy Agency and Royal Dutch Shell.

  • They differ on metrics used for energy consumption, such as how they report carbon emissions, economic assumptions and data presentation.

Enter the interactive tool and accompanying report from scholars with the nonpartisan think tank Resources for the Future, which harmonizes these huge and distinct long-term analyses.

The big picture: The tool cleanly compares how these reports project the future based on current and planned national policies, and climate-friendly scenarios offered by some of the analyses.

Here are some high-level takeaways from the comparison:

  • The studies agree that absent strong climate efforts, consumption grows "20–30% or more through 2040 and beyond, led largely by fossil fuels," notes RFF president Richard Newell and colleagues Daniel Raimi and Gloria Aldana.
  • That's driven largely in the global "east" — that is, Asia-Pacific, Africa and the Middle East — while consumption in the global "west" is largely flat.
  • Renewables surge, but without more ambition on climate, they "primarily add to, rather than displace, fossil fuels."

The intrigue: "Under ambitious climate scenarios, the global economy becomes much more energy efficient, global coal consumption declines by more than half relative to current levels, oil use falls by up to 20%, natural gas increases modestly, nuclear energy grows by more than 50%, renewables more than double, and carbon capture and storage (CCS) technologies are deployed at scale by 2040."

Where it stands: Beneath high-level areas of agreement, the analysis shows that modelers with different companies and organizations can diverge a lot. For instance...

  • IEA's "current policies" case sees coal use growing 38% in the global "east" by 2040, while the U.S. Energy Information Administration sees a 6% rise there.
  • BP, Equinor, and IEA diverge sharply in how much carbon capture and storage comes online by 2040
  • In scenarios that would keep temperature rise below 2°C, Shell's "Sky" scenario is notable for assuming widespread deployment of carbon dioxide removal tech.

Go deeper: Take the model for a spin

Go deeper

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9:45 p.m. ET: 19,282,972 — Total deaths: 718,851 — Total recoveries — 11,671,491Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9:45 p.m. ET: 4,937,441 — Total deaths: 161,248 — Total recoveries: 1,623,870 — Total tests: 60,415,558Map.
  3. Politics: Trump says he's prepared to sign executive orders on coronavirus aid.
  4. Education: Cuomo says all New York schools can reopen for in-person learning.
  5. Public health: Surgeon general urges flu shots to prevent "double whammy" with coronavirus — Massachusetts pauses reopening after uptick in coronavirus cases.
  6. World: Africa records over 1 million coronavirus cases — Gates Foundation puts $150 million behind coronavirus vaccine production.

Warren and Clinton to speak on same night of Democratic convention

(Photos: Abdulhamid Hosbas/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images, Sean Rayford/Getty Images)

Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Hillary Clinton both are slated to speak on the Wednesday of the Democratic convention — Aug. 19 — four sources familiar with the planning told Axios.

Why it matters: That's the same night Joe Biden's running mate (to be revealed next week) will address the nation. Clinton and Warren represent two of the most influential wise-women of Democratic politics with the potential to turn out millions of establishment and progressive voters in November.

Trump considering order on pre-existing condition protections, which already exist

Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump announced on Friday he will pursue an executive order requiring insurance companies to cover pre-existing conditions, something that is already law.

Why it matters: The Affordable Care Act already requires insurers to cover pre-existing conditions. The Trump administration is currently arguing in a case before the Supreme Court to strike down that very law — including its pre-existing condition protections.