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People pass in front of the IMF building during the IMF and World Bank fall meetings in Washington, D.C., Oct. 15. Photo: Olivier Douliery/Contributor/Getty Images

The world is nowhere near reaching peak levels of energy consumption, judging by low income levels in some of the fastest-growing cities and countries around the globe, an International Monetary Fund panel indicated on Tuesday.

Driving the news: IMF researchers Christian Bogmans and Lama Kiyasseh found that once a nation’s average annual income reaches a certain level — $55,000 — the country hits what is called an energy saturation point, and thereafter, the growth of energy consumption begins to fall.

Why it matters: Most scientists agree the world must rapidly cut greenhouse gases emitted from our energy consumption — mostly oil, natural gas and coal — to effectively tackle climate change.

  • While energy saturation is slowing the pace of heat-trapping emissions, "it will not be enough in the fight against climate change," Kiyasseh said during a panel at the IMF's fall meetings in Washington.
  • "Unless there is a break from past trends, then more urgent climate goals are needed," she added.

Yes, but: Still-growing nations, particularly in Asia and Africa, are looking to increase the standards of living — and thus incomes — of their populations.

Go deeper

Ben Geman, author of Generate
21 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Biden to sign major climate orders, setting up clash with oil industry

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

President Biden will sign new executive actions today that provide the clearest signs yet of his climate plans — elevating the issue to a national security priority and kicking off an intense battle with the oil industry.

Driving the news: One move will freeze issuance of new oil-and-gas leases on public lands and waters "to the extent possible," per a White House summary.

The rebellion against Silicon Valley (the place)

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Smith Collection/Gado via Getty Images

Silicon Valley may be a "state of mind," but it's also very much a real enclave in Northern California. Now, a growing faction of the tech industry is boycotting it.

Why it matters: The Bay Area is facing for the first time the prospect of losing its crown as the top destination for tech workers and startups — which could have an economic impact on the region and force it to reckon with its local issues.

Erica Pandey, author of @Work
4 hours ago - Economy & Business

Telework's tax mess

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

As teleworkers flit from city to city, they're creating a huge tax mess.

Why it matters: Our tax laws aren't built for telecommuting, and this new way of working could have dire implications for city and state budgets.