With a global population expected to rise to nine billion over the next two decades creating energy demand increases of more than 50 percent, supplying secure, affordable, clean energy to an additional two billion people will be no small undertaking. But I believe it is a challenge that presents the energy industry with a greatest opportunity of a generation.
For this reason, the platform offered by the World Future Energy Summit
, part of Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week and hosted by Masdar, has never been more critical for inspiring global collaboration and powering the future of energy investment and innovation.
What is encouraging is that energy industry is responding. According to McKinsey, global clean energy investment grew more than fivefold between 2005 and 2012, from $30 billion to about $160 billion. Even countries with vast reserves of fossil fuels, such as the Gulf countries, recognize the opportunity and are developing substantial programs for renewable energy development. But this is only the beginning.
We must accelerate the innovation cycle by diverting capital from traditional energy exploration to future energy development, whilst driving down the cost of clean technology to make the shift economically viable. It is now impossible to decouple our economic future from our environmental one, and to secure both I believe the energy industry must be braced for an industrial acceleration of great proportions.
Thus, more than 30,000 like-minded professionals will gather in Abu Dhabi early next year for what promises to be the most important 8th World Future Energy Summit yet, 19-22 January 2015 at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre.