There is a growing concern over our reliance on conventional electricity sources and their long-term environmental, climate change, and security of supply implications, and much hope is vested in the ability of future technological progress to tackle these issues. However, informed academic analysis and policy debates on the future of electricity systems must be based on the current state, and prospects of, technological options. This paper is the introductory chapter in the forthcoming book Future Electricity Technologies and Systems. The book comprises contributions from leading experts in their respective technology areas. The chapters present state of the art and likely progress paths of conventional and new electricity generation, networks, storage, and end-use technologies. In this paper we review the growth trend in electricity demand and carbon emissions. We then present a concise overview of the chapters. Finally, we discuss the main contextual factors that influence long-term technological progress
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