Oil Producers, Refiners and Renewable Energy Consumers: Correlation to the Wealth, Competitiveness, Peace and Happiness of Populations


A popular perception suggests that nations with abundant natural resources will ultimately demonstrate stronger economic performance. Studies investigating this perception, however, showed conflicting results. Fossil energy resources abundance (oil), processing capacity of energy resources (oil refining) and use of renewable energy technology from forty five countries, were correlated with four socio-economic indicators. The indicators included the gross national income (GNI) per capita, the global competitiveness index (GCI), the happiness index and the peace index. We demonstrated weak correlations between the crude oil production per capita and GNI per capita (r=0.392, p=0.01) but no correlations were observed between crude oil production and the other indicators. A strong positive correlation was detected between the amount of refined products per capita and GNI per capita (r=+0.875, p<.0001), GCI (r=0.602, p<0.0001) and happiness index (r=0.612, p<0.0001). Strong positive correlations existed between the renewable energy consumption per capita and each of the GNI per capita (r=0.681, p<0.0001), happiness index (r=0.611, p<0.0001) and peace index (r=0.709, p<0.001). The abundance of oil reserves does not make nations wealthier or happier. Processing of fossil fuels correlate strongly to the wealth and happiness of nations. The utilization of renewable energy technologies is associated with improved economic and social performance.

Author Information
Ahmed Hafez, The American University in Cairo, Egypt
Alaa-Eldin Adris, The American University in Cairo, Egypt

Paper Information
Conference: IICSEEHawaii2017
Stream: Energy: Energy Economics and Ecological Economics

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Posted by James Alexander Gordon