Policies or Technology? The Key to A Sustainable Energy Future

Should policy or technology take the lead?  It is not a reasonable question when it comes to deciding where the keys to a sustainable energy future lay – we need both. Creating a sustainable energy future – one that meets the demands of a growing population while addressing the challenges posed by concerns about a warming climate – is arguably the world’s greatest challenge. Finding solutions will be difficult, and it won’t happen unless we consider both the needs and concerns of the energy-intensive developed world and those of developing nations where the majority of population growth will occur. Sustainable energy will require three components: Access and reliable supply; affordability and cost effectiveness in a competitive marketplace; and environmentally responsible production, transportation and consumption of energy. Technology will be key both to expanding access to renewable energy and to reducing the environmental impacts associated with oil, natural gas and other fossil fuels.  It is the transformative key and investment in technology is a must. Policies can be very effective at driving behavior, but they must work in concert with enabling technology to realize the outcomes we desire, including increased energy efficiency and reduced emissions. Forbes