Future of energy production
Due to tightening restrictions on greenhouse gases and decreasing availability of some important energy resources, the energy sector faces huge challenges in the decades to come.
There are three major drivers affecting the future of energy production: 1) necessary measures to tackle climate change that will affect the way energy is produced dramatically 2) growing energy needs of many newly industrialized nations of Far East and later in the future developing countries of Africa 3) projected depletion of some energy resources (most importantly oil)
The issue of changing the energy production from fossil fuels towards utilising less polluting resources is most pressing in industrial nations since globally they have to be ones to initiate the change in fighting global warming. The EU has showed example by committing to cut emissions by 20% compared to the level of year 1990 by year 2020. Also, by the year 2020 20% of all energy consumption in the EU should be covered with renewable resources. At the moment this number is roughly 9%.
If the EU is seriously determined to cut its emissions and increase the share of renewable energy sources, it is clear that in the future there will be a huge demand for all kinds of innovations that will conserve energy and make it possible to produce energy in a more environmentally friendly fashion.
Europe 2020 - A European strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth http://ec.europa.eu/eu2020/pdf/COMPLET%20EN%20BARROSO%20%20%20007%20-%20Europe%202020%20-%20EN%20version.pdf
EU:s energy portal http://www.energy.eu/#renewable
Opportunity: Cleaner energy, more sustainable economy
Threat: escalation of global warming