Energy Production and Consumption

The "Energy production and consumption" fact sheet examines the evolution of energy production and consumption (energy balance), the primary energy consumption per energy source used and the evolution of Portugal's energy dependency vis-à-vis the exterior.


The relationships between the environment and the energy sector are particularly relevant. Energy production and consumption are directly and indirectly responsible for some of the major negative impacts of human activity on the environment. Most notably among those are the problems associated with greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere, as well as of other pollutants such as carbon dioxide, sulphur dioxide and nitrogen oxides.

Despite the efforts made in exploiting the great potential associated with renewable energy sources, and the remarkable improvements resulting therefrom, Portugal is still largely dependent on foreign countries for energy production. Being a country with scarce fossil energy resources, the imports bill still carries substantial economic and environmental weight, which must be increasingly reduced.

Transports and industry are, together with the energy production sector, the most important activity sectors in the final energy consumption, being, therefore, the biggest contributors to environmental pressures such as climate change, at the base of global warming.

Equally central to the relief of environmental pressures are policies and measures aimed at increasing energy efficiency, seen as the optimisation of energy use - it is about obtaining lower energy consumption for the same level of performance or comfort.

Measures tending to ensure the highest possible level of energy efficiency must be present at the energy production, transformation, distribution and consumption stages. The rational use of energy depends on consumers' behaviour changes, which should be complemented with technologies and/or processes that lead to lower consumption.

This fact sheet concerns mainland Portugal, the Autonomous Regions of Madeira and Azores, and shall be updated on an annual basis.

Objectives and targets: 
  • The "Energy-Climate" Package (or "20-20-20" Package) adopted by the EU in December 2008, established for 2020 a 20% reduction in primary energy consumption when compared to 1990 levels. In October 2014, as part of the EU "Energy and Climate" action framework for 2030, a non-binding target for reducing energy consumption at least 27% in relation to future energy consumption forecasts based on current criteria, was established;
  • For 2016, the National Action Plan for Energy Efficiency in the period 2013-2016 (PNAEE) estimates a reduction in energy consumption of approximately 8.2% compared to the average final energy consumption verified in the period between 2001 and 2005, which is close to the EU target of 9% energy savings by 2016 (Directive 2006/32/EC). For 2020, the PNAEE sets the overall goal of a 25% reduction in primary energy consumption and a specific goal for the Public Administration of a 30% reduction when compared to the consumption average in the period between 2001 and 2005.
Progress analysis:
Last update: 
Thursday, 7 February, 2019