Last week, Royal Dutch Shell’s CEO (Jeroen van der Veer) published an OPED in the Times of London: Hard times and hard truths dictate future: Efforts to fight global warming will be wasted unless we concentrate on energy efficiency. This is a valuable discussion, in no small part, through the holistic nature of the “hard truths” that van der Veer raises:
- Global Demand for energy surging — perhaps a doubling of demand by 2050.
- Peak Oil is a reality (okay — not his words, but clear implication: easy oil running out, new “oil” will be ever hard to extract)
- “increased coal use will cause higher CO2 emissions, possibly to levels we deem unacceptable”
The key point, though, is about energy efficiency:
More than half the energy we generate every day is wasted.
What’s the point of producing even more energy if we continue to waste most of it? Instead, we should aim to become twice as efficient in our use of energy by the middle of the next century. That is entirely feasible, provided that the will is there.
“Provided that that the will is there …”