Energy is the ability to do work. Its cost and availability defines our global standard of living. Developments in energy will define how fast we will continue to reduce global poverty.
Energy developments also define what will occur with global climate change, human health, human populations and preservation of the natural world.
Energy is one of the most capital intensive industries and knowledge intensive industries on the planet. It's capital intensity and often highly regulated structure leads to less than optimal adaptation to market and technology change. Additionally, the increased risk associated with an expanding wave front of technology change making it difficult to chose a winning technology when "better" alternatives may be just around the corner.
Global energy myths abound that stand in the way of reasonable public policy formulation. The global - transnational - imperative is seldom more apparent than in this domain.