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ADIPEC 2022: Reflections and Takeaways

Shaping the future of energy


ADIPEC 2022 ushered in a new era under the patronage of his highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, president of the United Arab Emirates, evolving the flagship global energy event to reflect a rapidly changing global energy landscape. It comes as UAE prepares to host the COP28 global climate conference next year and steps up its efforts to address climate change and speed up the energy transition.


The world of energy gathered for ADIPEC at a time of profound change that is not only impacting energy markets and producers, but also the everyday lives of global populations.


With the pressure on the global energy sector more profound than ever, the exhibition’s profile continues to rise having been achieved through unlocking the real value of a decarbonised future, accelerating the energy transition, showcasing technologies, and exploring both actionable strategies and solutions for both challenges and opportunities produced by the complex dynamics of the global energy market.


Highlights from ADIPEC 2022


With more than 350 conference sessions and over 1,200 speakers, ADIPEC 2022 provided strategic insights into the strategies, investment policies and technological innovation shaping global energy markets and the path to a net-zero future.


As the oil and gas industry pivots to deliver more energy with fewer emissions, addressing the challenges at the heart of the Energy Trilemma looking at how we ensure global energy security, affordability, and sustainability.


Energy Transition

We live in an interesting energy climate. As nations look to lower their emissions, they are simultaneously facing the increasing energy demands of a growing global population. While geopolitics has played an influential role in the current energy situation, the roots of today’s market volatility and ensuing supply crunch run far deeper. however, as complex as the situation may seem, the solution may be simple.

Careful and planned investment in both renewables and hydrocarbons is essential for an effective energy transition.


As the International Energy Agency pointed out earlier this year: “investment trends in recent years have contributed to the situation we see today. Over-reliance on any one kind of fuel or supply route leaves nations and the global market vulnerable to disruption, and that is what we are seeing today.”


ADIPEC was a powerful global platform that could help present the possibilities of a more inclusive approach. A successful energy transition must be built on progress for the economy and the climate together, it needs to be based on scientific, economic, and engineering facts, appreciating the complexity, multiple dilemmas and challenging trade-offs, needed to deploy practical solutions.


Capacity Building & Efficiency

Underinvestment in traditional energy has damaged global energy security but it has also put a strain on the energy transition. As we approach winter, the scramble to make up shortages is pushing countries away from their green agendas, as we have seen in supply crunches across the world. It is evident that without careful, planned investment in both hydrocarbons and renewables, energy transition plans will keep being rewritten whenever the market tightens.


Renewable forms of energy will play a significant and growing role, but oil and gas will remain an essential part of the energy mix in the decades to come. While this may be an uncomfortable reality for some, it remains an undeniable fact, and the past few months have made that clear. We cannot make a success of this transition if we neglect the foundations upon which the industry stands.


Therefore, investment in capacity-building and in boosting efficiency will allow the world to increase its overall global production, ensuring that energy markets can operate effectively and maintain global economic stability.


Collaboration

This is not the responsibility of one country, or group of countries, but a vital global project. We must come together through partnerships at both bilateral and multilateral level to move at a pace that reflects the urgency of the challenges we face.

Institutions like the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank are essential to this, in facilitating global finance flows, incentivising capital markets and supporting investment across the developing world in particular.


Equally important is engagement with the private sector, which ultimately must be the driver of the necessary innovation and technology to power the energy transition. Dialogue between governments, international financial institutions and the private sector must be constant and productive.


Ultimately, by exploring this collaboration, we will have the tools to advance this energy transition in the most efficient and stable way, but that must start by addressing the current energy situation in a pragmatic way.


The Road to COP28

When the global energy industry gathered in Abu Dhabi for ADIPEC 2022, it was just one week before COP27 in Egypt, and one year before COP28 in the UAE. The MENA region is going to be leading the global discussion on climate action, and ADIPEC helped facilitate collaboration and engagement between industry and the climate conversation on current and future energy systems.


Last year’s COP26 in Glasgow highlighted the scale of the commitment, investment and technology that needs to be applied globally to tackle the effects of climate change. Since then, however, geopolitical events have shifted the priorities of governments around the world. They need to advance industry and heat homes – and that energy doesn’t just fuel everyday life today, but also fuels economies which will help fund the required investment in the energy transition and the commitments made at COP. The Egyptian government has been clear on its desired outcomes from COP27 taking place this week immediately after ADIPEC. It is aiming for an “implementation COP” – one that focuses on how existing agreements and commitments are going to be implemented putting the spotlight on the practical, positive, viable, innovative solutions that drive progress for the climate and the economy.


It’s already clear that COP28 will give a voice to all parts of society, developed and developing countries, the public and private sector including the energy industry, as well build momentum in the transition.




Final Thoughts

The world was already facing a supply crunch from under-investment in energy production, as economies began to bounce back from the COVID-19 pandemic. The conflict in Ukraine has made a tight market even tighter, forcing countries to reassess urgent near-term strategic energy needs, often perceived as being to the detriment of their sustainability goals. But energy security and climate action go together you can’t have one without the other.


If people’s basic energy needs today are not met, economies slow down and that puts the brakes on climate action. Therefore, policies aimed at divesting from hydrocarbons too soon, without adequate alternative sources in place, are self-defeating.


It’s time to step back and reframe the energy conversation. We don’t have to choose between our planet and our prosperity, but rather focus on a realistic pathway that makes the case for a pro- climate and pro-growth transition showing the action the industry is taking to decarbonise and diversify energy sources.

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