Key Themes for the Global Energy Economy in 2023
In this latest edition of our Key Themes series we examine a number of topics which we believe will be highly relevant to the global energy economy in 2023. The past twelve months have seen a huge re-prioritisation of energy policy away from environmental issues and towards energy security and affordability. Many of the articles in this document question whether this will be a long-term trend or whether sustainability will return to the top of the policymaking agenda once the short-term need to focus on security of supply has passed. Indeed, many of our contributors argue that the short-term rebalancing of the energy trilemma towards energy security may even bring environmental benefits in the longer term given the desire of many countries to reduce their exposure to hydrocarbons in the aftermath of the war in Ukraine and its energy-related consequences.
To help in assessing these questions and providing some initial responses we have grouped the articles in this Key Themes paper as follows. We start within an assessment of, and outlook for, the global oil market, before continuing with a series of articles on the European gas market. Moving to a more global perspective we then review the availability of LNG to meet European demand and what this might mean for other importing regions before assessing the impact of the re-opening of the Chinese economy, the energy implications of India taking over the G20 presidency, and the development of Africa’s hydrocarbon strategy as part of the energy transition. From an environmental perspective, we look at the issues that will likely be raised in the Global Stocktake which will take place in 2023 ahead of COP28 and also consider the critical financing issues that emerged from COP27 and need to be addressed during this year. We then review carbon markets and carbon removal technologies and the issue of accounting for greenhouse gas emissions in the energy value chain. We return to look at China, which has also pledged to issue a methane action plan this year but a rapid rebound in energy demand could delay climate action and lead policy makers to focus on avoiding power shortages. Moving to the electricity sector, we discuss why 2023 will be an important year for electricity market design in Europe and consider the resurgence of nuclear power across the world. Finally, we discuss the impact of the US’s Inflation Reduction Act on the development of hydrogen technology and ask whether it undermines activity elsewhere in the world. This list of themes is long but it is clearly not exhaustive. However, it highlights many of the topics which we will be researching at OIES during 2023 and we would encourage you to access our written output at www.oxfordenergy.org.