Early in 1973, energy crisis started. The petroleum producing countries of the Middle East stopped exporting petroleum. As a result, there were big lines in gas stations. There were few cars and buses in the streets. Many factories started working part time. The world’s economy almost came to a standstill. This also brought to our attention that we were not going to have fossil fuels forever; they were not undepleteable. Sooner or later, we would run out of petroleum, natural gas and coal.
We engineers are the problem solvers. We try to solve the problems facing the humankind. In order to find a solution to the depletion of the fossil fuels and the environmental problems caused by them, right after the energy crisis, I established the Clean Energy Research Institute at the University of Miami. The mission of the institute was to do research aimed at trying to find solutions to the two related global problems of the depletion of fossil fuels and the environmental problems caused by their utilization. In parallel with our research activities, we also started information dissemination activities by organizing short courses, seminars, symposia and conferences.
The grandfather of this 18 ICCE-2010 Conference was named Alternative Energy Sources Conference, and was held in Miami, in December 1977. Since then, it has been in several cities of North America, Europe and Asia. This is the first time, it is being held in Malaysia, adding Malaysia to the Clean Energy caravan!
We are lucky that fossil fuel will be depleted in the foreseeable future, and we are fortunate that we have many alternative sources of energy. The energy from the sun and the wind, the power from ocean thermal and geothermal energy, and energy from wave power and tide power. We stand on the verge of commercial nuclear breeders and thermonuclear power. We are beginning to produce cleaner synthetic fuels derived from biomass, waste and coal.
Scientists and Engineers from many countries of the world will gather at the 18th ICCE 2020 Conference to present their papers covering the recent advances in clean energy sciences and in clean energy technologies. All these will no doubt speed up the conversion to clean energies, eliminate global environmental problems, and provide the humankind with higher living standards. I congratulate the organizers of this Conference and wish all the participants a very fruitful meeting and pleasant days in beautiful Kuching, Sarawak, Malaysia.
T. Nejat Veziroğlu
Honorary Chair, 18 ICCE 2020
President, International Association for Hydrogen Energy