Latest World Energy Trilemma Report reveals impacts from world’s first consumer-led energy shock on energy transitions

16th April 2024

The World Energy Council today published the 15th edition of its World Energy Trilemma Report, titled 'Evolving with Resilience and Justice'. The World Energy Trilemma framework tracks national energy performance against the three key dimensions of energy security, equity, and environmental sustainability. The latest report exposes the profound changes in global energy systems triggered by the world’s first demand-driven energy shock in response to the war in Ukraine and the need to evolve energy leadership to accelerate global energy transitions in all regions.

The World Energy Trilemma framework, developed across the Council’s worldwide community in more than 100 countries, is recognised as a trustworthy and practical tool to guide and sustain progress on energy transitions globally.

The Council has identified that the three dimensions are evolving to reflect new ambitions in managing energy for people and planet and the new threat of poly-crises. Energy security now encompasses the reliability of renewables, availability and accessibility or critical minerals, and resilience in the face of physical and cyber threats. Energy equity has deepened to include new demands for  justice, fairer access to and equitable distribution of clean energy benefits, and energy transitions' impact on vulnerable communities. Environmental sustainability has broadened to a holistic concern for planetary health, embracing circular economy principles, the interconnectedness of water, food, and energy systems, and the better alignment of decarbonisation efforts with the planet’s ecological limits.

National energy scores are listed in the World Energy Trilemma Index. While the overall Index scores continue to reflect the time-lag in national data collection and show European countries among the top performers, interviews highlight the challenges caused by the world’s first consumer-led demand-driven energy shock following the invasion of Ukraine. The energy security  impacts of the war, such as Europe turning its back on imports of Russian gas and seeking alternative sources, continues to have ripple effects throughout global energy systems.

While short-term solutions eased energy security issues, increased use of coal led to equity and sustainability concerns and rising costs risk longer-term European industrial competitiveness. These issues extend beyond Europe, suggesting that the Ukraine war will have long lasting broader implications for energy policies and strategies globally.

Dr Angela Wilkinson, Secretary General & CEO of the World Energy Council, said:

“This latest edition of the World Energy Trilemma Report demonstrates that how we got  ‘here’ won’t get us to ‘there’ when it comes to managing orderly, inclusive and just global energy transitions. The world’s first consumer-led energy shock, the materiality of the renewable energy revolution and the continued rise in structural inequalities are red flags to business-as-usual. Energy leadership is, can, and will change, adapt, and evolve - and that includes how we track progress.

“We manage what we measure. The future of energy is going to be much more demanding, literally! As we redesign energy for people and planet, we are transforming the World Energy Trilemma framework and extend the practical use of this performance management and pathfinding tool beyond countries to regions and cities.”

Regional Priorities Diverge

The report delves into region-specific challenges and responses. Africa grapples with rising demand amid cleaner energy adoption efforts, while Asia balances economic growth with clean energy transitions. Europe navigates security, affordability, and sustainability, while Latin America and the Caribbean seek socio-politically appropriate paths. The Middle East and Gulf States are transitioning themselves from oil dominance towards greater renewables developments, and North America findings emphasise the need for infrastructure availability, resilience and clean energy.

Evolving the World Energy Trilemma Framework to urgently redesign energy for people and planet

The World Energy Council is evolving the World Energy Trilemma framework and its dimensions, extending its use and enabling real-time application through accessible data, new metrics, and expanded practical use of the tool beyond countries to regions and cities as a means of energy transition performance management and pathfinding.

The World Energy Council continues to combine to the use of  tools in our World Energy Leadership Toolkit – including the World Energy Trilemma and World Energy Scenarios - to curate better informed and inspiring action-orientated leadership and enable collaborative and transformational pathfinding.

The World Energy Trilemma tool will drive sessions at the World Energy Council's 26th World Energy Congress next week. As the world's energy leaders convene under the same roof in Rotterdam, 22-25 April, there has never been a better time to harness their collective knowledge and expertise to build a better tool for tracking energy transitions.


FULL REPORT | World Energy Trilemma 2024 Report
FULL REPORT | World Energy Trilemma 2024 Report
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EXECUTIVE SUMMARY | World Energy Trilemma 2024 Report
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY | World Energy Trilemma 2024 Report
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