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Impact of Urbanisation on the Electricity Sector

  • March 2014
  • -
  • Frost & Sullivan
  • -
  • 58 pages

This research service covers the ongoing developments in the Asia-Pacific electricity sector due to the impact of several mega trends—the main one being urbanization. As cities emerge to be the largest consumers of goods and services, the strain on physical infrastructure is throwing up significant challenges to city planners. To sustain the economic growth momentum in cities, supply of reliable and stable power is critical. The way electricity is produced, stored, managed, and applied is likely to undergo several challenges due to technological advancements, changing demand patterns, and consumers' awareness level.


Implication Summary


As urbanisation continues, the demographic profile of cities will change resulting in smaller households, fewer births, and a greater percentage of the aged (65+).

Environmental concerns of pollution and waste management will intensify as denser populations exacerbate existing issues. The impact of natural disasters will be felt more if urban agglomerations continue to increase. Effective disaster mitigation, planning, and management will be needed.


Political Changes: Greater responsibility for operational and strategic decision making will evolve
from the state/national governments to city/local level.


Residential and Commercial Pattern will continue to concentrate around urban centers, becoming denser at its core through taller, mix-use buildings.

Infrastructure needs to be upgraded or built to support greater urban populations including water, energy, and transportation.

The economic activity of a country will shift from agriculture and manufacturing, with new jobs coming from the service sectors.

Retail Patterns will evolve along with consumers.


Business Models will change, with more efficient ways of distribution evolving to meet the needs of
sizeable urban populations.

All regions require substantial investments in infrastructure, with an estimated $ x trillion required by 2025. Both China and India, who face the greatest urban population increases, will need to build infrastructure on a grand scale to meet their populations’ needs.

To cater to new urban dwellers’ needs, cities will need to invest heavily in infrastructure. It is estimated that cities will need more than double the annual physical capital investment, i.e., from nearly $ x trillion today to more than $ x trillion by 2025. Urban centres in emerging economies will make the most of this investment.

As cities grow, they transition through separate phases of development, moving from an agricultural base to manufacturing and, finally, to services. Each successive phase of development is driven by, and helps drive, further urbanisation.

To effectively target markets, companies should develop strategies around selected city clusters, based on proximity, income, and purchasing behaviour. This allows for easier market expansion at lower incremental costs.

As cities grow and play a stronger role in their country’s economies, policy and decision making will shift from central to more local controls as cities elect officials best able to ensure their needs are met.


Table Of Contents

Impact of Urbanisation on the Electricity Sector
Table of Contents


Executive Summary 4
Mega Trend: Urbanisation—Market Overview 11
Snapshot of Urbanisation Mega Trends 12
Asia-Pacific Urban Population—Mega Cities by Country 2025 14
Mega Regions in Asia-Pacific 2025 16
Mega Corridors in Asia-Pacific 2025 17
Key Challenges: Impact of Urbanisation on the Electricity Sector 18
Energy Security 20
Balancing Electricity Demand-Supply Gap 22
Greenhouse Gas Emissions 23
Network Congestion 24
Changes in the Power Industry Structure 25
Macro-to-Micro Implications of Urbanisation: Technologies and Solutions in the Electricity Sector 26
Changing Electricity Mix (Fuel Diversification) 28
Application and Integration of Renewable Energy Systems 30
Energy Efficiency Measures 33
Increased Traction of Combined Heat and Power 34
Energy Storage Technologies 35
Urban Waste to Energy Solutions 37
Rise of the “Prosumers” 38
Key Summary 40
City Case Studies 42
Appendix 48
The Frost and Sullivan Story 51

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