(OIL PRICE) – This week, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released a new report. Unsurprisingly alarming, the report aimed to turn up the heat on governments, the business world, and every one of us to do more about the energy transition. Decarbonization, the report said, had to move faster and more dramatically. Yet that wasn’t the only document that made the headlines this week. Shell also released a report in which it detailed two different scenarios for the future to 2050. In those scenarios, the supermajor’s analysts pitted energy security against the energy transition – something the IPCC reports have never done.
The choice between energy security and decarbonization is not one that tends to attract a lot of attention. It is a sensitive topic because it exposes the shortcomings of low-carbon energy. Yet, as Europe found out last year, it may be wise to discuss this topic before we splash $110 trillion on the energy transition.
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In one of its scenarios, dubbed Archipelagos, Shell paints a familiar picture of the world of the future, at least politically. With a focus on energy security rather than decarbonization, the Archipelagos scenario describes a world similar to 19th-century Europe, where spheres of interest shift and nations ally with a view to energy security and resilience.
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