World energy problem: what Jazz and Symphony can offer

3 July – The World Energy Council will this week underline the reality that there is no one global solution to the issue of energy supply.

Reaching a solution, says the Council, will involve solving each of the individual parts of the problem to achieve the global aim of sustainable, affordable and secure energy for all.

The World Energy Council’s director of policy and scenarios will address an audience at the Royal Society of Chemistry on Thursday (4 July), when he lectures on Balancing World Energy Needs: Securing the Future.

Professor Karl Rose will give a preview of a major new report by the WEC due to be unveiled later this year at the World Energy Congress in Korea.

October’s World Energy Scenarios 2050 report will examine the three ‘trilemma’ challenges of energy security, social equity and environmental impact mitigation and is expected to spark interest across the industrial and political spectrums.

Professor Rose will, at his lecture in London’s Chemistry Centre, say that politicians and industrialists have to accept that hard choices need to be made by this generation to bring about real changes for future generations and for the planet.

“The role of government is crucial in securing the energy answers,” said Professor Rose today. “Essential in the campaign to have sustainable energy for future generations is the role of research and development as well as education and training.”

The WEC has built two scenarios that describe the world in 2050, which they have labelled the Jazz Scenario and the Symphony Scenario and between them they cover all the approaches to the creation and consumption of energy.

Jazz focuses on energy access, affordability and quality of supply, while Symphony focuses on environmental sustainability and energy security.

The WEC does not intend one scenario to be better than the other.

“There will be things that succeed in both scenarios,” said Professor Rose. “And there will be failures as well – and as a result there will be winners and losers within each scenario.”

A key finding of WEC’s three-year study is that demand will most likely continue to grow, but with significant shifts between regions.

Professor Rose will point out in his talk that in different regions of the world, energy challenge priorities vary dramatically.

He said today: “Climate change is not the main issue in most parts of the globe; rather, economic development and the improvement of air quality come first. Europe is the only exception.

“The World Energy Council believes that a balance can be achieved only through compromises and initiatives all around the globe.

“A strong emphasis on demand-side measures, like energy efficiency and innovative end-user technologies, combined with an increasing growth of renewables and other low-carbon technologies like carbon capture and storage, will be crucial for balancing the energy trilemma.”


Media enquiries:


World Energy Council: Monique Tsang,, +44 20 3214 0616
Royal Society of Chemistry: Brian Emsley,, +44 207 440 3317; +44 7966 939,257