UK, France and Italy to Face Energy Crisis within Five Years, StudyBy Staff Reporter, UniversityHerald Reporter
The United Kingdom, Italy and France will face severe energy crisis within the next five years, according to a report released by the Global Sustainability Institute at the Anglia Ruskin University.
Researchers said that the UK has just 5.2 years of oil, 4.5 years of coal and three years of gas left. On the other hand, the fossil fuels in France will be depleted within the next year, while Italy's gas and coal reserves will be empty within a year. It will run out of oil after a year.
As a result, these countries will be entirely dependent on global fossil fuel suppliers like Russia, Norway and Qatar.
By observing the current oil reserves and consumption, the researcher concluded that Europe has the least amount of natural reserves when compared to other continents.
"These maps show vulnerability in many parts of the EU and they paint a picture of heavily-indebted European economies coming under increasing threat from rising global energy prices," said Dr Aled Jones, Director of the Global Sustainability Institute at Anglia Ruskin, in a statement.
"It is vital that those shaping Europe's future political agenda understand our existing economic fragility. The EU is becoming ever more reliant on our resource-rich neighbours such as Russia and Norway, and this trend will only continue unless decisive action is taken."
But, some of the European countries have displayed better results. Bulgaria has 73 years of coal, Poland has 24 years, while Germany has 250 years of coal left. In comparison to other continents, Russia has more than 500 years of coal, 100 years of gas and 50 years of oil. Meanwhile, Kuwait has more than 700 years of oil remaining.
Europe can overcome the shortages of gas, coal, and oil by encouraging the development of renewable energy sources like wave, wind, tidal, and solar power. But, member countries haven't particularly shown any enthusiasm to promote alternative sources of energy, particularly UK.
Just last month, David Cameroon's government announced cuts in solar farm subsidies. The Conservatives have already declined to introduce subsidise new onshore wind farms if they win the 2015 general election, Independent reports.
The British government is hoping that shale gas extraction and the discovery of new oil reserves will help reduce the shortfall.