Geopolitics and Transition: The New Nexus

The intersection of geopolitics and the energy transition is growing. How will rising trade tensions between the US, EU and China affect the advancement of renewable power, electric vehicles (EV) and fossil fuel demand? What about the relations between energy producers, including Russia, Saudi Arabia and consuming countries like India and the US? How will governments manage domestic pressures and difficulties to deliver their climate commitments?

AI and Energy

Artificial intelligence (AI) promises to remake the way we both use and produce energy. Power demand for data processing is soaring but so are efficiency gains from the use of AI and machine learning. What does the rise of AI mean for the future of energy?

Traders in Transition

Major trading houses have reported record earnings in the past two years. How are they using that windfall to acquire the assets that will support growing operations in power, LNG and carbon? Are more upstream assets needed following withdrawals from Russia? Why are they so successful when the rest of the industry is struggling for direction?

The Future of State Energy Companies

National energy strategies are becoming more varied and sophisticated as countries push them to take on a broader energy mandate. What new models are being tried? Will they stick to oil and gas or branch out into low-carbon – at home and abroad? Could they buy whole international oil companies or will they stick to assets and joint ventures?

New Alliances and New Conflicts

How are strengthening ties between countries like Russia and China and expansion of groups like BRICS changing the geopolitical landscape? How will these increasingly powerful alignments challenge the US and the West in key conflicts areas such as the Middle East, Russia-Ukraine and potentially Taiwan? What do these specific conflicts tell us about the broader landscape of geopolitical competition? What scenarios are possible, and what are their implications for future power dynamics?

What Do Investors Want From Energy Companies?

Will markets ever value “Big Energy” conglomerates? Should companies focus on what they know best and leave capital allocation to the market? How should markets assess companies focused on very cheap renewable power, nascent hydrogen or ever-evolving battery technology? Is energy destined in the future to be a lower-value business?

The Race To Decarbonize Industry

Hydrogen, electrification, carbon capture and nuclear are all vying to be the go-to solution for energy intensive or hard-to-abate industries (steel, chemicals, shipping, aviation). Will there be a single winner, or will each find a niche?

Taking Stock of Transport

The headlines are full of negative news – and yet, EV sales have consistently beaten forecasts. How should we decipher these mixed messages? Are we poised for a new phase of growth as new models and battery technologies hit markets? Or will trade barriers, charging infrastructure and other challenges halt growth in its tracks?

Inside the Board Room

How are the highest-ranking corporate leaders grappling with the biggest issues facing energy companies? How are they weighing the risks and rewards of complex geopolitics? How are they navigating conflicting signals from investors? How can they prepare companies for a transition that looks increasingly uneven across the globe?

Elections Everywhere: What Next?  

How are the record number of elections globally – and especially the consequential race in the US – rippling through geopolitics, energy and climate? What can we expect from incumbents with strong mandates? What about some of the new governments? Are these results poised to accelerate the shift to a multi-polar world? Could we see material changes in the trajectory for climate change and the energy transition, or will other issues take priority?

The Future of Liquid Fuels

How will product demand be affected by the low-carbon transition? Are more refineries still needed in developing markets? Can refiners afford to reconfigure kit  and convert to biofuels? Will e-fuels really take off – and how big will they be?

What Is Gas’ Growth Trajectory?

New gas projects continue to roll out in the Middle East and elsewhere. But other projects are running into political and financial headwinds. Are consumers still prepared to sign up for long-term commitments for greenfield projects? How strong are the drivers behind LNG demand? 

The View From COP29

What were the key outcomes from COP29? Was enough progress made on sticky issues like climate finance and carbon trading to unlock these important sources of capital for the transition? What does the COP29 process tell us about the important COP30 talks, when nations will update their climate pledges? What did key countries like China and India do?

Transition in the Global South

What does a realistic energy transition look like in the Global South? Will developed economies step up with promised finance if transition models look different than they have in Europe and elsewhere? How can both developed countries and those in the Global South pave the way for private investment in energy projects? How will countries like the United Arab Emirates, China and others use climate investments to further geopolitical aims?

Is 1.5°C – and Paris – Still in Reach?

The 1.5°C Paris Accord target has been the touchstone for national climate policies and international cooperation, but is it still within reach? If not, what could replace it? What could be the impacts to climate diplomacy, and where will the world turn for climate leadership? What are the dangers (and costs) of letting 1.5°C slip? Will geoengineering remain taboo?

Carbon Offsets: Development Path or Dead End

Climate activists, companies and governments all tout the promise of carbon offsets to spur sustainable development, but to date the markets have been rife with misuse. Can offsets ever play a role in spurring a just transition? How is the Global South looking at the promise of offsets? Can offsetting be an acceptable mitigation tool on an international scale? Can they deliver the money needed for climate finance?

The Pace of the Global Transition

Will the transition away from fossil fuels play out faster or slower than expected? Will the COP change the pace? How will global election cycles, the desire for energy security and the need to keep energy affordable impact the shift? What could this mean for major producers and consumers? Is the transition even stoppable? How much faster could it go?

Climate Protests: Taking It to the Streets

How are campaigners using protests and direct action to press for change? How have past social movements leveraged protests to create change? Has social and political progress ever come without protest? Is there hope for a more constructive dialogue on climate and energy, and how can we achieve it? How civil society groups drive the outcomes at COPs – an often overlooked but crucial role.

Climate Cases: The Role of Litigation in Curbing Climate Change

How is climate litigation progressing globally? How are governments playing both the role of the plaintiff and defendant in climate cases? Could climate litigation dramatically accelerate the transition in some countries and if so – where?

Carbon Budgets: What They Are and Why They Matter

If 1.5°C looks out of reach, will carbon budgets be the next important benchmark for national and international climate goals? How will countries negotiate internally and internationally if climate budgets rise in importance? What does science say about the amount of carbon that we can put into the atmosphere and the effects if we exceed it? What do different carbon budgets mean for fossil fuel use?