Asia – the gravity centre for energy

Energy is the glue that holds everything together, and nothing moves without it. In an interview with ONS thought leader Narendra Taneja shares insights into the importance of understanding energy holistically, the gravity center shift to Asia, and Europe’s inward-looking tendencies.

Concentrated solar power in Dunhuang, Gansu, China. Photo: Unsplash

In short:

  • India is projected to be the second-largest economy in the world by 2050, with Asia now being the global gravity center for energy.
  • Europe tends to be inward-looking.
  • After the Ukraine crisis, Europe began building an energy fortress for itself and forgot about everything else, compromising energy security.
  • It’s time to acknowledge the reality and rework the energy transition.

Narendra Taneja is a name synonymous with energy. From tracking every aspect of energy, including policy, business, geoeconomics, geopolitics, climate transition, and security, he feels his passion has given him a clear view of the world, helping him understand the energy sector and landscape holistically.

He is the Chairman of the Independent Energy policy institute in New Delhi, India. And he also leads the World Energy Policy Summit every year in New Delhi.

«The world has seen the leaders who built the Western world struggle hard to create the kind of world we enjoy today. It’s important to read history, but Europe is too busy enjoying its high standard of living to understand the bigger picture,» says Taneja.

Asia, with its 4.4 billion population, is in many cases truly the gravity center of the world, and the energy sector in Asia is now the global gravity center for energy, Taneja explains.

India with its 1.36 billion people and the fifth-largest economy in the world, is projected to be the second-largest economy by 2050, almost at par with the United States. Tanjea notes, “the energy sector in Asia is the most important region globally, and it is where the future lies.” Therefore, understanding the energy sector holistically is crucial.

Narendra Taneja

Europe’s Inward-Looking Tendencies and Energy Security

Even though he loves Europe, Taneja adds that the region tends to be inward-looking, and its media people and ordinary citizens tend to have a different view than the Asian population.

«Some people might not like what I am saying, but after Ukraine, Europe began building an energy fortress for itself and forgot about everything else. The energy transition has suffered massively as a result,» Taneja says.

“Some might say the energy transition accelerated the last year?”

«I hear they say this, but no one explains how it has actually accelerated,» Taneja exclaims.

He adds; Building an energy fortress for rich countries comes at the cost of poor and developing countries. Nobody questions those who articulate better, but when we compromise with our energy future, we compromise with our kids’ energy future.”

He calls for an acknowledgement of reality and a rework of the energy transition in a way that isn’t based on political points. 

Compromising energy security is not an option.



Do you want to hear more from Narendra Taneja? Check out the full interview in our podcast ONS Energy Talks or from the stage at ONS 2022. 

See below:


ONS Energy Talks Podcast:

Do not miss out on the conversation between Narendra Taneja
and the ONS Director of Communication,
Inger Johanne Stenberg. 

From the ONS Conference 2022:
Session: A just transition
The panel is lead by Dr. Carolyn Woo, The President’s Fellow for Global Development, Purdue University.

Panel: Børge Brende, President WEF, Narendra Taneja, Chairman, Independent Energy Policy institute (IEPI), Fahad Alajlan, President, Kapsarc.