International energy security, governments and markets: Lord Howell
An overview of the role of Government, particularly the FCO, in increasing the UK’s energy security through a greater focus on international energy security is provided. The UK needs to ensure secure and affordable supplies in a global marketplace, meaning national aims have to align with a changing global picture. The context of global energy is discussed in respect to: global increases in demand; complex and uncertain geo-political trends; the need to act on climate change; changing market dynamics; a growing need for engagement with China and other emerging Asian economies; the growing difficultly in extracting existing and untapped resources; the need to develop sustainable energy technologies; and attract investment. A summary of what is happening within the UK to improve energy security is also discussed, including: the need to address security of supply and security of demand to reduce price volatility and its impacts; creating the right environment for investment in energy infrastructure and technologies; increasing the use of renewables, nuclear and CCS; increasing energy efficiency; creating open and transparent markets; strengthening bilateral relationships, whilst also working through the EU; continuing to use gas in the transition and looking at opportunities for developing shale gas. It is suggested that these measures will bring opportunities for UK companies.