Governments and industry face two challenges: the need for energy security, and the limitations imposed by the dangers of global warming.  Making the choices more complex is the remarkable array of new energy sources and new technology, including solar, wind, nuclear, biofuel, and geothermal. 

Some approaches (such as energy efficiency and conservation) address both energy security and climate change, but others play contradictory roles (such as coal-to-liquid).  The emerging economies may well dominate the climate change arena, and yet it is difficult to see how their carbon dioxide emissions can be limited.  One plausible thesis: that to be sustainable, alternative energy must be profitable.  Which choices are the most likely to meet the world’s needs? I will try to put these issues in perspective, and discuss the challenges they pose to the negiotations about to take place in Copenhagen.

Introduction by Bernardo Bortolotti, FEEM and Universy of Turin