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Geopolitics of the Energy Transition


The control of energy resources, flows and infrastructures has been playing an important role in international relations, influencing patterns of inter-state cooperation and confrontation. A shift from fossil fuels to low-carbon technologies, implying a lower concentration of resources, a decentralization of energy infrastructures, and a lower intensity of international energy flows, promises therefore to have deep geopolitical ramifications. Structuring the findings of an emerging literature, this chapter will offer an introduction to the geopolitics of the energy transition, by addressing the significance of a slow decline of fossil fuels, the rise of clean energy interdependency, and the shifting determinants of energy mastery for the relations among powers.