Attention was focused on the problem of energy in the early 1970s when OPEC (Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries) forced the price of oil to quadruple in less than three years. This led to serious economic problems for all industrial nations who rely heavily on oil to power industry and for transport. Until that time oil was taken for granted: it was cheap, easy to transport and an extremely efficient energy source. Then serious public debate began about the dwindling resources of not only oil but also the other fossil fuels: coal and natural gas. Debate centred around how our energy demand was likely to develop and how the energy needed could be supplied.
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