Global Energy Demand: a McKinsey reference case

Bram Smeets

Bram Smeets, Associate Partner at McKinsey Energy Insights in Amsterdam

The slides for this event are not available.  Instead, McKinsey have offered two reports that relate to the research discussed in this presentation.

The GEP Reference Case

THe EU net-zero report


Energy systems around the world are going through rapid transitions that affect many aspects of our lives. The continuation and acceleration of these shifts will bring important changes to the way we fuel our cars, heat our homes, and power our industries in the coming decades.

In this talk, Bram Smeets and Alexander Pfeiffer will present two of McKinsey’s proprietary energy scenarios – the Global Reference Case and a European Decarbonization Scenario.  This Global Reference Case provides our consensus view on how energy demand will evolve over the coming three decades. The European Decarbonization Scenario provides an alternative trajectory under the assumption that the EU will meet its goal of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. The differences between the scenarios are stark and provide some insight into the changes required in all sectors to meet the Paris climate goals. We use these scenarios to help our clients across sectors to navigate the energy transition.


Bram Smeets is an Associate Partner at McKinsey Energy Insights in Amsterdam. He is chief economist for the Global Energy Perspective, the McKinsey outlook on the evolution of global energy systems. Bram works with clients across a range of sectors, including financial institutions, national governments, power and oil and gas. Earlier, Bram worked at Ecofys, a sustainable energy consultancy, where he led the unit working on low-carbon energy scenarios. He holds a PhD in energy economics from Université Libre de Bruxelles and a MSc in Econometrics and Operations Research from Maastricht University.

Speaker: Alexander Pfeiffer is Engagement Manager at McKinsey Energy Insights in Amsterdam and Solution Leader for Sustainability Insights, McKinsey’s analytics- and model-backed decarbonization advisory. Alexander works with clients across a range of sectors, focusing on transport, in particular, e-mobility, charging infrastructure and Li-ion batteries. He holds a DPhil in Geography and the Environment from University of Oxford, and a MSc in finance and accounting from the University of Mannheim.

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