Book Review – Energy Shift

Joanna Schroeder

energy-shift-coverThe world’s energy paradigm is shifting and this shift is going to affect every company, CEO, and person in the world. But how? It’s a question I’ve often wondered about so this week I read, “Energy Shift: Game-Changing Options for Fueling the Future.” This book was unique in that it targets business leaders and helps them understand the major forces that are changing how business is being done today. The authors Eric Spiegel and Neil McArthur both work for Booz & Company.

Although the authors cover off on a lot of topics, I wanted to highlight one thing in particular. The authors point out that meeting the world’s growing demand for electric power while limiting the emissions of greenhouse gases is the most urgent imperative for energy policy in the twenty-first century. Developing alternatives to coal has been much talked about as has how to store electricity. However, what you don’t hear as often and that the authors stated quite succinctly as it relates to handling the increase in global demand for electricity is this.

exhibit_8-21“One additional factor that may push demand even higher in the future is the advent of electricity as an alternative energy source for transportation: the the extent that plug-in hybrids and all-electric vehicles succeed in the marketplace, they will increase the demand for electricity in proportion to the decrease in demand for petroleum that they create.”

Despite all the attention to the world’s energy situation, the authors note that there has not been sufficient change in the reality of energy production to significantly shorten the timetable for the energy shift. How fast this will happen, they say, depends on how the three major areas of uncertainty are resolved.

  1. 1.  The future of greenhouse gas regulations.
  2. 2.  Energy Security.
  3. 3.  The pace of technological innovation.

So what happens when you mesh these three challenges together? No one knows. But the authors do make suggestions on how this transition can be smoother, faster and more effective, but you’re going to have to read the book to find out.

Click here to buy “Energy Shift”.

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