The oil embargo of 1974, the ensuing energy crisis, and the
rising energy costs were a wake-up call for the global community to move away
from the dependency on petroleum and commence an earnest search for alternative
energy sources coupled with energy conservation measures. Much progress in the energy sector has
happened in the three decades since then.
Words such as energy conservation, energy efficiency, renewable energy,
carbon footprint, etc. have now become commonplace and subjects of development worldwide. However, much more needs to be done.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has brought
the issues of greenhouse gases emission and global warming into the
forefront. The recent United Nations
Climate Change Conference held in Bali in December 2007, attended by more than
10,000 attendees including representatives from over 180 countries, adopted a
roadmap for greenhouses gases reduction, details of which will be finalized in
two years by 2009. The Bali roadmap is
intended to lead to a post-2012 international agreement on climate change
following the expiration of the Kyoto Protocol.