Why are Asian gas prices higher?
Setting the context for the discussion, moderator Richard Mably, Global Editor (Commodities and Energy), Thomson Reuters, said the debate on climate change and energy security usually took place on parallel tracks. However, a connection between the two was needed because the world was getting richer even as the population kept growing.
Amb Richard Jones, Deputy Executive Director of the International Energy Agency (IEA), felt that while the era of fossil fuels was over, oil would still be required for transportation and emerging markets, natural gas would play an increasingly important role in the energy mix, and coal would remain the backbone of many markets. The possible reduction in nuclear energy would also likely drive up demand for fossil fuels. The world was moving in the right direction, he said, but the pace of change was not fast enough.
A sustainable oil production
"The age of oil is not dead," argued UAE's Minister of Energy Mohammad bin Dha'en Al Hamili, adding that the UAE was investing in long-term sustainable oil production. However, he acknowledged that hydrocarbons were finite resources, and given the UAE's unprecedented economic growth the UAE was also investing in nuclear and solar power, and hoped to become a global hub for renewable energy.
Dr Michael Levi from the Council on Foreign Relations believed that both energy security and climate change could coexist with minor concessions made to achieve the long-term goals of a sustainable energy future. However, with respect to climate change, the world was headed in the wrong direction, with the lack of progress in international negotiations due to shortfalls within individual countries. Read more...