Energy is the lifeblood of our economy. Every part of our economy relies on energy in some way. In a fast-changing world, the ability to expand Mississippi’s economy and improve quality of life is heavily dependent on the availability of abundant energy at an affordable cost.
Additionally, as developing countries like China and India continue to grow their economies, energy demand will undoubtedly increase. The independent Energy Information Administration projects global energy consumption to increase by about 50% over the next 25 years. Considering the amount of energy the world economy requires today, this will be an astonishing increase in energy demand. Obviously, all energy sources – oil, natural gas, nuclear, wind, hydro, biomass, solar – will be needed to meet this scale of demand while continuing to find ways to be more energy efficient in buildings, transportation vehicles, and manufacturing.
In preparing for this growth in energy production and to participate in new technology development, Mississippi has a major economic opportunity. Opportunities are in energy production, research, technology development, components manufacturing, transportation and distribution, storage, and extraction, and with each of these comes jobs and investment.
To capitalize on all of these opportunities, Mississippi must be innovative and strategic. The Mississippi Energy Institute is a non-profit business aimed at partnering with Mississippi’s government leaders, academic institutions, and economic development and business communities to develop growth-minded policies to maximize energy based economic development in MIssissippi.
Mississippi’s future depends on how effectively we position our State for these opportunities. This is a monumental task but one that will pay off. We must get it right.
Patrick Sullivan, Mississippi Energy Institute President
Kevin Van De Ven