The aim of the present document is to supply general information concerning fossil fuels that represent, today and for the near future, the main energy source of our planet. New fossil fuel technologies are in continual development with two principal goals: to decrease environmental impact and increase transformation process efficiency. Examples of this effort are: (1) gas-steam combined cycles integrated with coal gasification plants, or with pressurized-fluidized-bed combustors; (2) new cycles with humid air or coal direct fired turbine, now under development. In the first part of this document the international and national energy situations and trends are shown. After some brief notes on environment problems and alternative fuels, such as biomasses and municipal wastes, technological aspects, mainly relevant to increasing fossil-fueled power plant performances, are examined in greater depth. Finally the research and technological development activities of ENEA (National Agency for New technologies, Energy and the Environment) Engineering Branch in order to improve fossil fuels energy and environmental use are presented.