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What is Causing the Global Energy Crisis?

What is Causing the Global Energy Crisis?

The global energy crisis is a term used to describe the current state of energy availability and access around the world. This crisis is caused by a combination of factors, including resource consumption, poor infrastructure, and unsustainable practices. Ironically, global warming is both a direct effect of the global energy crisis, but also one of the leading causes. In this article, we'll explore what is causing the global energy crisis and the overarching impact it’s having on our planet as a whole.

What is the global energy crisis?

The global energy crisis was officially announced in 2021, in the aftermath of the pandemic, but was escalated in February of 2022 after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Global energy usage declined during the pandemic, but energy firms were still generating energy and therefore not making profits. To make up for the losses during this time, energy prices skyrocketed, and this is increasing the risk of a global recession. But the reality is that there was a crisis already developing long before this. The global energy crisis is a result of the increasing demand for energy, combined with the limited resources available for its production. This has led to a global power shortage, which has caused prices to rise and has made it more difficult for businesses and people to access energy. Not to mention the additional pollution created as a result.

What is Causing the Global Energy Crisis?

The global energy crisis has been a growing concern for many years, but it has only recently come to the forefront. As the world’s population continues to grow and technology advances, the demand for energy is only going to increase. It’s essential that we reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and invest in more sustainable and renewable sources of energy if we are going to combat this growing crisis and create a positive outlook for the future of our planet.

Causes of the global energy crisis

There are several factors that have compounded to create the global energy crisis we now find ourselves in. The severity of the matter was only brought to our attention in recent years after high energy prices were spurred on by the COVID-19 pandemic. And the reality is that the energy market is now more volatile and fragile than ever before. But the energy crisis in the world was looming far before the pandemic. Here are some of the primary causes of the global energy crisis:

Resource consumption

Resource consumption is one of the main contributors to the global energy crisis. As the world’s population continues to grow, so does the demand for energy. Overconsumption of energy is, for the most part, mindless. Businesses and consumers aren’t actively trying to consume more energy, but as business operations become increasingly reliant on the use of energy, it is an inevitable reality. And for individuals, we live in a consumerist society that puts convenience on a pedestal. But that all comes at a price.

Not only are people consuming higher volumes of energy, but couple that with overpopulation, and you can see how this can be a serious problem. Experts say that with the current rate of population growth, we will need 50% more energy to sustain humanity by 2050. We are using up resources faster than they can be replenished, and because of that, energy sources like oil, coal and natural gas are becoming increasingly scarce. And although governments have scrambled to find short-term solutions to protect consumers, huge energy reductions need to be implemented to mitigate this issue.

Global warming

This might come as a surprise, but global warming is another major factor contributing to the global power shortage. We know that energy consumption plays a role in global warming, but it is also exacerbating the issue. As the Earth continues to warm, the demand for energy is increasing. This is due to the increased use of air conditioning and other energy-intensive activities.

Global warming is also causing extreme weather events, such as droughts and floods, which can disrupt the production and distribution of energy. For example, droughts can lead to water shortages, which can impact the production of hydroelectric power. Similarly, floods can cause disruption to the supply of energy resources, such as coal and oil.

What is Causing the Global Energy Crisis?

Poor infrastructure

The power-generating equipment that was built 100 years ago will not operate as effectively as something built today. Not only is a lot of global energy infrastructure simply old, but the technology is outdated. New, more efficient power-generating equipment is available, but it hasn’t necessarily been implemented everywhere. But if there’s more efficient technology available, why isn’t it being used? Well, most governments and private energy firms don’t want to front the funds to upgrade poor infrastructure while the old equipment is still operational, even if its operation is inefficient and costs them more in the long run.

For energy to be used effectively, the entire infrastructure needs to be updated. Even one weak link can hinder productive usage. From energy generation to transmission and distribution, all moving parts of the infrastructure need to operate as a high-functioning unit. And right now, we are falling behind.

Unsustainable practices

Unsustainable practices across businesses, organizations and individuals play a major role in the energy crisis in the world. Many countries have adopted energy practices that are not sustainable, such as reliance on fossil fuels to produce energy. This has caused an increase in greenhouse gas emissions, which is contributing to global warming and, therefore, not sustainable. In addition, many countries and institutions haven’t prioritized the investment in renewable energy sources, such as solar and wind power, which would reduce the demand for unsustainable energy practices.

At the most basic level, both businesses and households simply don’t realize how much energy they are wasting. Forgetting to turn off fans or lights in one room might not seem like a big deal, but compound this across all the businesses and households in the world, and you’ve got a lot of waste. In the United States alone, over 66% of energy is wasted due to unsustainable practices, and you can see a breakdown of the wastage in each type of energy below.

What is Causing the Global Energy Crisis?

Impact of the global energy crisis

The global energy crisis has had a significant impact on the world. The increasing cost of energy has made it difficult for many people to access energy, especially in developing countries. This has caused a decrease in living standards, as people are not able to access basic amenities such as electricity and running water.

In addition, the global energy crisis has had a negative impact on the environment. As resources become increasingly scarce, more energy is being produced from burning fossil fuels, which is contributing to global warming. This has caused extreme weather events, such as droughts and floods, which are having a devastating effect on the planet.

The importance of getting ahead of the next global energy crisis

In an interview with BBC, the owner of British Gas estimates that the global energy crisis will last until at least 2024. But without making the drastic changes necessary, we’re sure it could last a lot longer. Rather than assuming things will level out and “go back to how they were”, it’s important that we get ahead of the game and start implementing changes now. This is especially important for companies and businesses that consume higher volumes of energy, as they will need to reduce their energy consumption or switch to renewable energy options if they want to remain profitable.

Concluding thoughts on the global energy crisis

The energy crisis in the world has put a spotlight on the fragility and volatility of our energy supply. It’s important that we encourage governments to implement more sustainable energy practices and shift away from fossil fuels to ensure energy stability in the future. But beyond government implementations, we all have a responsibility to reduce our energy consumption and increase demand for alternative energy sources like solar and wind power as a way to shift away from fossil fuels. Every decision we make, even at an individual level, does make an impact --- we get to decide whether that impact is positive or negative.

If your business or organization needs support in reducing your energy consumption and increasing sustainability, Green Interval can help. We help businesses develop and drive sustainable growth through our Green Interval Capability Framework. Get in touch to see how we can help you.

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