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The Geopolitics of the Energy Transition and Opportunities for International Cooperation

December 2023

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As the world starts to shift toward a renewable energy system, the current competitive geopolitical lens, relying on assumptions from a fossil fuel paradigm, must be reexamined to avoid a runaway climate catastrophe. New framing lenses for assessing geopolitics that take into account the interrelation of climate, energy, finance, trade, and security altogether can inform more cooperative global and regional policy approaches to energy transition.

This paper summarizes the main conclusions and insights from the Geopolitics of the Energy Transition convening organized by the Stanley Center for Peace and Security and E3G. It identifies limitations of current foreign policy and energy frameworks and reviews how differing dynamics between fossil fuel and renewable energy systems could drive changes in geopolitics. The paper suggests directions forward for climate policy and foreign policy communities to further the conversation about energy transition and its role in peace and security.

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