Energy poverty is currently one of the major concerns of national governments, with first-world countries facing severe energy shortages. For example, a Eurostat report showed 35 million European Union (EU) citizens, accounting for 8% of the EU population, could not use house heaters during the 2020 winter. Furthermore, the Russia-Ukraine war and supply chain disruptions led to inflationary pressures, resulting in unaffordable energy prices.
There are multiple reasons why the energy crisis is no longer limited to underdeveloped countries. To begin with, energy production is still heavily reliant on fossil fuels, like coal mines and deep sea oil extraction. Profit-based mega conglomerates have monopolistic control over these resources, thereby unilaterally determining energy prices. Additionally, structural difficulties keep energy poverty levels so high.
To address the energy crisis, governments and companies need to shift towards sustainable energy practices. It’s important to understand the structural problems of the energy sector before proposing sustainable energy solutions.