The energy transition entered the digital age in 2021. Our most-read articles of the past 12 months show an appetite for data, artificial intelligence and effective accounting. Hydrogen, of course, also makes an appearance
With the global economy still reeling from the Covid-19 pandemic, 2021 was a year of adjustment to a new normal for many. These new processes are increasingly digital-based solutions, which was reflected in our most-read articles for the year.
We also present our top five opinion pieces for 2021. These pieces are written by high-level actors from across the energy spectrum and we would like to invite anyone that has an interesting view on the energy transition to pen such a piece. These articles are not promotional but are a chance to demonstrate your thought leadership on the barriers to a decarbonised economy and to create a discussion over potential solutions.
If you have an opinion regarding an aspect of the global energy transition you would like to share with other FORESIGHT readers send a short pitch of 200 words explaining why you are the right person to deliver this opinion to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Around 50% of the shift from fossil fuels to renewable forms of energy has been a digitised transition to 2020, says Energinet, Denmark’s power system operator. As the world digitises further, the already vast volumes of data will only increase in mass. Advances in Artificial Intelligence technology and machine learning tools provide ways of processing this tsunami of data into a new world order. Read here
Five years ago, technologists excitedly started suggesting how to use blockchain for energy applications and a raft of start-ups followed, sporting distributed ledgers for the power sector. Today, the word “blockchain” is seldom heard in energy circles. While the hype may have been overblown, work continues instead on a quieter revolution to the one that was promised. Read here
Put garbage into an economic model and garbage comes out. By using a discount rate that inflates the cost of the energy transition, the EU’s executive body is undermining the bloc’s new and more ambitious carbon reduction goal. Behind the scenes, however, method may lie in the madness. Officials working on legislative updates are suspected of holding a negotiating trump card up their sleeves. Read here
Data is having a major impact on our world. In energy, an influx of data is changing the roles of each player across the value chain but it needs to be gathered and processed in a suitable way to have the greatest influence. Ensuring the data is right to begin with is essential to the success of the energy transition. Read here
Hydrogen suffers from an abundance of hype, particularly about what it can be used for in the energy transition. Wild claims for the application of hydrogen, with little basis in current science and commercial reality, have worked to obscure the realistic opportunities for putting truly clean hydrogen to work here and now. Read here
Emission-free energy alternatives to fossil fuels are emerging that could drive the world’s shift to a net-zero future. But there must be sufficient stimulus from governments to limit the technical, commercial and financial risks of these new technologies for investors, says Arnaud de Giovanni, global renewables leader at EY. Read here
The public transport sector has been hit hard by the covid-19 crisis. Since climate change is not taking a break, electrification must be at the centre of a green recovery. Smart depots will play a crucial role in transforming the face of urban transport, says Monique Mertins at Siemens Smart Infrastructure. Read here
Developing a climate finance plan of requisite scale depends on better joined-up diplomacy by developed countries who must heed the warnings of high jeopardy, says Iskander Erzini Vernoit from think tank E3G. Read here
Replacing limestone with clay in cement production can cut global CO2 emissions by up to 3%. But there is significant investment tied up in the “old” ways of doing things, and it will be necessary to use a range of incentives—as well as technological advancements—to change the status quo, writes Fleming Voetmann, vice president at FLSmidth. Read here
Green hydrogen is expected to become a commercially viable energy carrier soon. The coming decade could see it become a vital part of the energy transition, says Frank Wouters from the MENA Hydrogen Alliance. Read here
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