The GEA is a major, multi-year, multi-stakeholder global initiative, formally launched in 2007 and involving leading experts from around the world in academia, business, governments and intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations. Most research and analysis began in earnest in the second half of 2008. The GEA will go beyond existing authoritative energy studies by presenting a comprehensive and integrated analysis of energy challenges, opportunities, and strategies for developing, emerging, and industrialized economies. Inter alia, the GEA is carrying out technical analyses of energy technologies and strategies in relation to sustainable development goals, including climate change mitigation and policy analyses relevant to the development of multilateral approaches to the environmental challenges associated with energy systems. GEA goals are to provide (i) policy-relevant analysis and capacity-enhancing guidance to national governments and intergovernmental organizations, (ii) decision-support material to the commercial sector, and (iii) analysis relevant to academic institutions. The International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) is coordinating the GEA with several international partners. The targeted publication date for the GEA report is late 2010 (by Cambridge University Press).

In each area of focus, a “Knowledge Module (KM)” is being developed via a team led by one or two Convening Lead Authors. CMI and collaborators are well represented in the GEA. For KM 12, Fossil Energy Systems. Li Zheng (BP-Tsinghua Clean Energy Center) and Eric Larson (PEI) are the Co-Convening Lead Authors; Robert Williams (PEI) is another lead author; and contributing authors include Liu Guangjian (PEI), Theo Fleisch (BP, retired), George Nicolaides (BP, retired), and Xiangkun Ren (Shenhua). For KM 11, Renewable Energy Systems, Eric Larson is one of the Lead Authors (contributing on biomass energy systems).