From our extraordinary use of electronics and technology, to the rapidly growing digital economy and cryptocurrencies, the way the world consumes power requires a significant amount of energy. But with this rapid consumption of power, we must be mindful in working together to support the energy transition to a low carbon future, and be smart about creating an energy ecosystem that carefully serves to power the entire globe.
Most of us go about our days using power more than we even realize. Before we reach the office, we’ve likely used a multitude of devices that require energy: coffee pot, hot shower, microwave, tablet, smartphone, TV, car. Our need for power is endless in many parts of the world. However, in other regions, power is still inaccessible. In fact, there are 1 billion people in the world who don’t have access to electricity. And it is critical that we think about how we power all geographies in a way that will provide everyone with power that will last for generations to come – and to maintain the growing need for energy, we must be innovative in our approach.
In the energy industry, it’s clear that incredible opportunities exist around energy innovation – and they are exciting – but the pace at which we’re bringing ideas to market requires attention. Companies are investing in new technologies like IoT, automation, data and analytics, and applying them to bring benefit to their organizations. We’ve seen great successes here. By applying the same principles and methods on a global scale, we can contribute to building a more sustainable energy future for everyone. A key to that is a greater collaboration among corporations, entrepreneurs and investors to break down systemic barriers and accelerate the pace of innovation.
In our recent paper, Accelerating Sustainable Energy Innovation with the World Economic Forum, we begin to uncover these barriers by pointing to areas of focus, regulatory frameworks and financial mechanisms where we can fully develop and commercialize energy technologies that have the power to change the way we access energy in the future.
We’re scratching the surface on an important shift that is beginning to take place, and we as energy consumers have a responsibility to continue to drive this shift. We have a long way to go, but it’s time we hold ourselves accountable for increasing the speed of innovation in energy so we can create a sustainable portfolio of sources that will bring power to the entire globe for generations to come.