Image credit: ryantxr
With the IEA telling us that no government is prepared for peak oil, you would hope that politicians are playing close attention to diversifying their country's energy sources and tackling voracious demand. In Britain the government has just launched a huge green investment bank, and committed itself to 50% CO2 cuts by 2025, and not before time. A recent report by risk analysts suggests Britain is one of the most exposed industrial nations when it comes to supply disruption and price shocks.Reporting over at British newspaper The Telegraph, Rowena Mason explains that risk-analysis firm Maplecroft has undertaken a comprehensive analysis of countries around the world and their exposure to energy security risks. Britain, she says, does not come out well:
"Although energy infrastructure is well maintained in the UK, high fuel prices at the pump and relatively high imports of both fossil fuels and electricity leave the UK vulnerable to disruption of their energy supply," Maplecroft found. "The UK became a net importer of natural gas and oil in 2004 and 2005 respectively. And the UK lags behind other European countries in its adoption of renewables as an energy source."
Perhaps surprisingly, while Saudi Arabia did well in the analysis, many other oil-producing nations like Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait and Qatar were rated high risk due to their energy intensive economies and a potential inability for production to keep up with demand. The United States was also ranked as being high risk, due to its energy intensive economy and the fact that a quarter of its oil imports stem form the Middle East.