The 1980s saw the emergence of a new energy perspective, which may be termed a paradigm of high energy efficiency, as part of the process of sustainable economic development recommended by the report Our Common Future of the World Commission for Environment and Development (1987). This innovative concept of economic development requires that current economic actions must not impair the economic options of future generations, and therefore energy systems must be redesigned to reduce the use of exhaustible energy resources and limit emissions. An obvious consequence for energy policy is the need to move towards high energy efficiency. This in turn requires changes in economic incentives, particularly in the price system.
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