With the global population increasing at an exponential rate, the energy demand will continue to rise just as fast. The current energy infrastructure will not be able to meet future demand unless it is expanded greatly. With energy as the underpinning of all modern day societies, it plays a huge role in the geopolitical make up of the world. Policy is shaped based around energy in one way or another; whether it be how to acquire more energy or how to cap demand in order to use it more efficiently. This increased demand for energy will create a crisis around the globe leaving nations fighting over what to do for more energy.
In an economy, energy is depended upon for economic production. Workers use energy to travel to work and to do whatever their job is. Energy is used in every sector of every modern economy around the globe. Energy is crucial to globalization. So as governments look to expand their energy supply to meet demand, significant changes must be implemented. According to a report by the International Energy Association, an “estimated $38 trillion dollars will need to be invested in the energy supply infrastructure between 2011 and 2035 to meet growing demand.” This demand spurs from three major things. The first is from increasingly advanced technology such as cell phones, computers and even smarter vehicles. Even though they are attempting to decrease the usage of fossil fuels, these newer high efficiency electric cars still use energy, and lots of it. The second is increasing populations all over the world. An increase in population equals an increase in demand for energy. The third much larger reason for such a huge increase in demand is the outgrowth of post-Cold War neo-Imperialism. Following the Cold War, the United States and other modern nations turned to underdeveloped countries to produce clothing and other products that we use every day for much cheaper than could be done in their home countries. This has helped some of these third world countries become more advanced but often at the detriment to their working classes. Nevertheless, increased industry in these nations has caused a greater demand for energy in order to keep up with the rising economic production as shown in the graph below.
To meet these rising energy demands, governments are going to have to come up with the funds to increase the size and scope of the energy infrastructure. Unfortunately, this probably means higher prices for energy heading forward. This is going to be difficult because of how bad the world economy has been. The working classes of various nations around the world are not at the present moment able to fund an effort such as an energy tax. What I think will happen and should happen is the companies that are operating in foreign nations should invest there to meet energy demands in those nations while at home, our private sector companies can invest in expanding the electrical grid through private investment.