Electricity security report cover

Reliable, affordable access to all fuels and energy sources

Energy Security

The IEA was created to ensure secure and affordable energy supplies, and it conducts analysis on current and future risks for oil supply disruption, emerging gas security challenges, and increasing system flexibility and resilience of the electricity sector. But energy transitions and the growth of cyber criminality have expanded the scope of what constitutes energy security.

Electricity security

A major structural change in the electricity generation around the world

The clean energy transition is bringing a major structural change in the generation profile of electricity systems around the world. Variable renewable generation has already surged over the past decade, driven by cost reductions and favourable policy environments, a trend that is set to continue and even accelerate in line with climate change objectives. Meanwhile, conventional power plants, notably those using coal, nuclear and hydro, are stagnating or in decline. While proper policies can ensure reliable energy access during the transition, the diffuse and decentralized nature of much renewable generation does raise the risk of cyberattacks and many clean energy technologies rely on metals and minerals that are in tight supply or whose production is dominated by a limited number of nations.

Share of variable renewables in the global electricity mix, 2015-2024

Oil security

One of the IEA's core activities is ensuring the security of oil supplies by setting stockholding requirements for member countries

In accordance with the Agreement on an International Energy Programme, each IEA country has an obligation to ensure it holds total oil stocks equivalent to at least 90 days of net oil imports. In case of a severe oil supply disruption, IEA members may decide to release these stocks to the market as part of a collective action.

IEA total oil stocks, end-January 2024

Our work on energy security

Ensuring the uninterrupted availability of energy sources at an affordable price

The IEA defines energy security as the uninterrupted availability of energy sources at an affordable price. Energy security has many aspects: long-term energy security mainly deals with timely investments to supply energy in line with economic developments and environmental needs. On the other hand, short-term energy security focuses on the ability of the energy system to react promptly to sudden changes in the supply-demand balance.