India’s per capita Energy consumption one of the lowest in the world !


I hit upon an interesting graph, while researching upon the consumption of energy amongst developed and emerging countries. I expected that India’s energy consumption will be low, but I did not expect that it would be one of the lowest in the world.

Although, these figures are not the latest ones, but it will give you a fair Idea about India’s energy consumption per capita in comparison with other developed and emerging economies.

Energy use per capita

Primary energy use (before transformation to other end-use fuels) in kilograms of oil equivalent, per capita.


Just to give you an idea about how India compares with other economies in energy consumption – Indian used 510 kg of energy compared to U.S.A, which consumes 7,778 kg of energy per capita. The World average of energy consumption is close to 1818 kg.

Here is the energy consumption of some other economies (2006):

Country Energy (Kg) per capita
Unites States 7778
Singapore 6968
Australia 5917
Russia 4745
Germany 4231
United Kingdom 3814
World Average 1818
Mexico 1702
China 1433
Brazil 1191
Indonesia 803
India 510



  1. Himanshu Shrivastava says

    I dont think dat removing the below poverty line people is goin to solve d power shortage issue.
    As we r part of dis country,
    so are they and Our main aim should be develop wid dem nt widout dem.
    d only way to sustainable development is to harness and develop the sources of alternate energy or renewable energy.
    As a fact,
    India in its 11th 5 year plan i.e frm 2007-2012 cald fr 80 GW of new electric power out of which only 14 GW is frm renewable energy(hydro,solar,wind,tidal,geothermal).
    China which is quite comparable to India in population,
    developd 90GW of renewable energy only in d year 2007!!
    Dis shows dat tym has come to change d scenario and move towards a more reliable and cleaner source of energy generation.
    Cos burning coals and petroleum isnt goin to solve dis problem at all or lookin fr dere new reserves.
    Its high tym dat we shud try and look fr sum new and unconventional sources.
    Fr example-
    a mixture of methane and water wen meets cool conditions, methane hydrate or FireIce is formd.
    India has one of d largest reserves of methane hydrate,
    and its a very enriching source of energy. 1 litre of methane hydrate generates around 165 litres of Methane or natural gas.!!
    Japan has developd dis technology,
    and If India is able to procure dis breakthru technology,
    d face of India cn change forevr.

  2. ben lim says

    why is singapore so bloody high! It’s shameful!

  3. Pearldeep Saini says

    We generate and trade a huge amount yet the graph is too low compared to other developing one…

  4. kuldeep says

    Hey Guys,

    I dnt know much about that India is doing justice with power consumption or not. But I do know is vast resources available to produce and increase power capacity. What does it take ???… It is a question … Who will solve it???…. its a another big question also.

    Let me say about something about politician , who is leading a country:::–

    what does they need… good qualification not only to represent country but to trace out problems root cause and to implement solution to get results……. so on…

    In India as i came to none of the politician is capable to do so…. because they are in assembly due to castiseem not due to qualifications……

    Okey we all know very well that we have a lot of problems and in such a big country it taking some time to undercover the problems but it is not possible in our case ………… as of great politician .

    Why we are comparing bench mark of other countries………….

    Let me more specific … we all know that we having problems like floods in lower region of country as speaking technically due to heavy rainfall and it causes biggest setback in economy of country…. then why we are not try to find out solution for this…. what is solution for it???? We are thinking Delhi, Mumbai is emerging economic growth thats only the a false…..

    We are not working on the grass root.

    Our leaders are not capable to lead the country now dnt say we did a lot in last 65 years actually this development is nothing although having so much resources available in hands…….

    If come to actual topic which seems so much easy to solve … as i mention above that we are having floods then in this case those big rivers which are causing the floods need to divide into small revers to distribute the water and there would be no floods it means there would be know reconstruction chargers it means less use of energy in construction industries …. it means less use of capital in real estate …. it means more crops to get economic value … it means grass root of India is doing well…. by the way…. if we are able to divide these revers then why we are not building hydro electric plant on it…. it means we are getting Electricity from our solutions…. it a example only to get the solution here…

    Guys, you only are writing and discussing here all about the this thats very good…. discussion is one part but action is another , we are having a lot discussion but now we need action …. any XYZ can discuss about the problems … but only some can find solution and implements…..

    Frankly speaking our leaders are not capable to do so……. they not admire this country …. now its time to change …

    stop doing this mistake again and again sometime not you but coming generation have to suffer … there will be a big inflation and every thing will be out of reach …..

    now i think we dnt have to choose but we have to lead this country…. our poltics need a very big change…. you know what i am thinking 1 hundred thousand people from all over the India … must be educated and must be from engineering, medical and business industry have collect together and form a biggest team in india which will change the era in india… …. this can be done,…. if we can run companies, factories, schools and why not country…..

    this country need us… it need our knowledge….. i am ready to be team forever and what about you…. ask from yourself and start to make a team… there will be no discussion like this then there will be only action…….


  5. Vijay Agrawal says

    Altaf has raised the very relevant issue of wastage that is extraordinarily high in US. Needless to say it extends beyond energy. Rather than competing with US per capita consumption and mess up the environment, it is prudent to pay attention to the marginalized poor and assimilate them into the national mainstream. And in order to do that governments have to reach them and generate income sources where they mostly are — in the villages.

  6. Altaf Rahman says

    When reading this article, two reactions came to mind.

    1) At the moment we are doing less environmetal crime compared to others.
    2) We got a lot of catching up to do.

    Other than the above two feelings I would also like to add the following :
    US use of 7778 Kg of oil equivalent does not mean they are more developed. In fact they waste so much that if systematically / cleverly utilised, they can have the same quality of life with a third of the present consumption.
    India already uses its energy very efficiently (somes times touching bare minimum below which the system wont work).
    What I mean to say is we are doing more justice to each Kg equivalent of energy compared to otehr so called, self declared “Developed countries”

    Also as Mr. Rahul pointed out, if we need to give better quality of life to the below poverty line ppl, we will have to increase our energy consumption.
    At the same time Developed world can bring down wastage. (This way they can compensate use of energy by developing world by reducing their own use)

  7. Rahul says

    US: Per Capita Energy: 7778 approx GDP: $15 trillion

    CHI: Per Capita Energy: 1433 approx GDP: $4 trillion

    IND: Per Capita Energy: 510 approx GDP: $1 trillion

  8. Rahul says

    I feel there is a slight adjustment that we should make to these figures. With a billion plus heads India’s per capita measurements seem low.

    However, if one were to adjust these figures to reflect the fact that the majority of the population lives in poverty and has much lower energy footprint than the middle classes the picture would change drastically. If we say 30-40% of the nation qualifies as middle class that implies that our energy consumption is mostly due to 300 – 400 million people.

    That would straight away raise this figure by a factor of 3-4 times.

    Further, energy used per unit GDP is also a more interesting measure and more revealing of the realities of energy usage between nations.


    1. Arun Prabhudesai says

      Hi Rahul,

      That is an interesting comment and good take on numbers if you look only at middle class. Take the example of China, they too have many poor people, but there footprint is still much higher than what it is in India.

      Having said that, what you is right, poor people will have much lesser energy consumption than middle/higher class..

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