The International Energy Agency’s (IEA’s) latest World Energy Outlook report predicts that global energy demand will jump by 30% by 2040.

The figure could have been twice as high if it weren’t for energy efficiency improvements, the agency added.

Solar will become the cheapest way of generating energy thanks to falling costs, the report predicted.

Other forecasts include wind becoming the biggest source of power in Europe after 2030.

Solar shines in China and India

Fatih Birol, the IEA’s Executive Director, said: “Solar is forging ahead in global power markets as it becomes the cheapest source of electricity generation in many places, including China and India.

“Electric vehicles are in the fast lane as a result of government support and declining battery costs but it is far too early to write the obituary of oil, as growth for trucks, petrochemicals, shipping and aviation keep pushing demand higher.

“The United States becomes the undisputed leader for oil and gas production for decades, which represents a major upheaval for international market dynamics.”

> Download the IEA's Energy Outlook report