Debate 26 - Supply: What are our needs and can we meet them?

Wednesday, September 28th, 2005 | Debates

The 1990s, with falling oil and gas prices, was a period of easy energy. Consumption grew, we discovered the 4WD, increased suburban sprawl, talked about a UK 20% cut in CO2 emissions.

Supply: What are our needs and can we meet them?

Supply: What are our needs and can we meet them?

Now peak oil is approaching, demand is about to overtake supply, the UK is no longer energy self sufficient, fuel prices are increasing rapidly and nuclear power is back on the political agenda. Not only is the UK unlikely to meet its carbon dioxide emissions targets (and most of the world even less so) but recent science tells us that those targets should be very much more stringent.

The first energy debate sets the scene and asks how much energy we really need, particularly in operating buildings, which account for about half the UK’s carbon dioxide emissions. Land use is also vitally important, as getting people and things between buildings is responsible for another 30%.

The debate was chaired by Prof Peter Guthrie, Professor Engineering, University of Cambridge.

Speaker 1: Nuclear Power - Another Depletion Problem (PowerPoint)

Dr David Fleming, an independent energy consultant

Speaker 2: Oil Discovery versus Production (PowerPoint)

Dr Jeremy Leggett, Chief Executive, Solar Century

Notes of debate

Action Points

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