Building Trust in the Mission of World Energy Policy

Gaining trust in improving a country’s energy quality means a government could seek, maintain, and develop alternative energy for energy scarcity. Every country, either one on the Asian continent or the other on the European continent, essentially wants to develop renewable energy as an interchange solution to fossil energy. Many countries still rely on fossil energy, that is, natural gas and oil, which predictably will become obsolete in years to come. 

Meanwhile, when we look at the global solution, the United Nations has stipulated the sustainable development goals (SDG) that a country should optimize its renewable energy. The SDG’s expected target mentioned that developed and developing countries should utilize renewable energy by 2030. As a developed country, Ireland also plans the same activities in which the use of fossil energy must be reduced in 10 years, and that policy began in 2021. Through the national energy and climate plan (NCEP), all the country’s EU members, including Ireland, report the development of their energy policy to the European Commission, particularly their progress on renewable energy.

Based on NCEP, in 2030, Ireland targets primary energy consumption efficiency to reach 15.9%. At the same time, the efficiency for using final energy consumption is targeted to get 13%. In the same year, the target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions reached 30%. The emission reduction target has increased compared to 2017, which came to 13%, and in 2020 which reached 20%.

The energy policies of EU member countries comply with global agreements to support the use of efficient and renewable energy, including energy that is expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In addition, future energy policies will also create interconnections and support synergy among nations for performance on research and development in the energy sector.

Critically, developing renewable energy is a complicated measure for all nations to reposition their use of fossil energy, including Ireland, considering that many aspects and parties have depended on this fossil energy for their energy needs. Meanwhile, the energy transition policy was introduced by G20 a couple of years ago. Since 2009,

The G20 meeting in Pittsburgh, through the group’s top leadership, has built a commitment to reduce fuel subsidies as people know that fuel subsidies have burdened some nations’ state budgets. Therefore reducing them becomes a reasonable measure to create efficient fiscal utilization for other development needs.

During geopolitical tensions due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in 2022, the weakening foreign exchange rate, inflation, and rising oil commodity prices have again caused an increase in fuel subsidies in the state budgets of several countries. The subsidy reduction plan could become better planning because subsidies are still part of the energy subsidy expenditure allocation in the state budget. It takes a strong commitment from all parties if renewable energy is to be realized immediately. Primarily its mission is to support green development and tackle climate change.

The progress of renewable energy development has started to give better results. France, the United States, Japan, and South Korea are even trying to develop nuclear energy as an alternative to renewable energy. The new model for expanding nuclear power is an alternative to other energy sources expected to create cost efficiency, resources, and reduction of pollution that distorts environmental ecosystems and climate.

The world’s attention is heading towards governance changes in finding and developing available energy. Governments and business sectors in each country are also trying to find sources of financing that can be used to build their energy resource management plans. But the Government and the business sector experience a dilemma.

Based on a survey analysis conducted by the Edelman Trust Barometer, just released in 2023, the level of public trust in the Irish Government is only 45%. Meanwhile, public confidence in the business sector reached 52%. Eldelman classifies the level of public trust in the Irish Government as a form of distrust. At the same time, public confidence in the business sector is neutral.

Likewise, with Germany, Spain, Italy, and the United Kingdom. The level of public trust in the Government in this country is at the level of distrust. Public distrust of the Government is a challenge for European governments in inviting public involvement to support the development of alternative energy.

The public protest against the change in the retirement age rules has become one of the public’s expressions of disappointment with the French Government under the leadership of Emmanuel Macron. However, that situation differs from the distrust shown by the other reason. The accumulation of social problems may become one of the reasons why the public is starting to see deficiencies in implementing policies issued by the French Government. Social mobility policies related to the spread of Covid-19 could have been one of the triggers.

Not to mention the problem of economic recession and world pressure due to the conflict in the Black Sea. The inflation in food and energy prices worst the financial situation when many people are still searching for their living food caused by are being forced to lose their jobs due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Accordingly, European governments must struggle again to build public trust so that plans for developing renewable energy and other alternative energy can run according to the planned targets.

While Europe was about to restart building the trust of its people, China, Indonesia, Singapore, India, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates succeeded in increasing their people’s confidence in their respective governments. Building public trust needs enormous effort and pressure. The people always believe in their Government if there is a manageable gap to narrow the space between expectations and realization.

Even so, some Europe countries are still developed land that can continuously adapt and change. The maturity and capacity of human resources in several European countries have even been very advanced. Their ability to manage energy and create innovation is outstanding. Every country needs time and process to advance its energy development industry, including developing countries in Asia such as China and ASEAN. They also seek to drive their energy development industry so that energy needs for power generation, transportation, heat, and other requirements can be fulfilled immediately.

All countries at least strive to achieve the SDGs target in 2030 to reach renewable energy use by 2050, which is targeted to achieve net zero emissions. As long as the G20 and other international forums mutually support global cooperation in combating climate change’s effects, renewable energy development will undoubtedly be achieved according to the expected targets.

Each generation determines the changes in its destiny. They will evaluate and continue this achievement from generation Y to Z. With technological developments no longer limited by space and time, interaction and coordination between periods and countries are straightforward. That is why the mission of diplomacy and energy cooperation will continuously adapt the pattern and character of every age that is different from time to time.

Rostamaji Korniawan
Rostamaji Korniawan
The author holds a Postgraduate degree from Pukyong National University, South Korea (majoring in International and Area Studies) and the School of Strategic and Global Studies, University of Indonesia (European Studies).