Isabelle Kocher: “Is the energy revolution for today or for tomorrow?”
The energy revolution is in the process of becoming reality: innovations are being developed for greater decarbonization, energy efficiency of buildings and green mobility. ENGIE has opted to invest €1.5 billion in innovation over three years.
Extract from an article published on June 16, 2017 on LinkedIn Influencers
When can we expect the energy revolution?
This seems to be an incongruous question. Each day, there is a steady buildup of facts to demonstrate that the energy revolution is already under way, driven by recent technological advances and the tremendous acceleration of renewable energies. The energy revolution is happening now, I’d be tempted to reply.
Yet many people remain incredulous, wondering whether the progress that has been announced really will occur in the coming years or if we will have to wait longer. When will we see the transformations needed by buildings, by modes of transport, by cities, without which the energy revolution will remain incomplete.
Beyond skepticism over the time factor, there are genuine concerns.
The energy revolution represents the promise of decarbonized world where we will be able to reconcile economic and environmental progress. However, some people fear the effects on employment of an industrial revolution which, in the momentum of creative destruction, will see a decline in some sectors as others are emerging.
Yet technological solutions exist which are already bringing about the energy revolution and which constitute significant potential for growth and for jobs.
These solutions, which the general public are still not familiar enough with, deserve to be given more attention.
Because at ENGIE we believe in the potential of these innovations, and particularly in their capacity to make their mark rapidly in the coming years, we have decided to invest €1.5 billion in innovation over 3 years. We are investing in and collaborating with start-ups at the vanguard of these fields of the future so that we can help speed up the development and adoption of their technologies. We are assuming these investments even though the technologies developed are not always mature and will only become profitable in a few years’ time.
This commitment to innovation has also led us a to sign a partnership agreement with the Solar Impulse Foundation, on the occasion of Viva Technology, a major event in Paris entirely devoted to exhibiting and celebrating technological solutions of the future.
The Foundation, which was created by Dr Bertrand Piccard, launched the World Alliance for Efficient Solutions in November 2016. It aims to make consumers aware of solutions that are already available and capable of supporting sustainable growth.
Both this partnership and our involvement in Viva Technology reflect our conviction that the role of innovation is to drive the energy revolution and help speed it up over the next few years.
In this article, I want to develop some examples of these innovations.
They are not yet mature, but their development will lead to a transformation of the most immediate areas of our everyday lives, such as buildings and transport, making them more sustainable.
Taken all together, these innovations show that the energy revolution is in fact nearing completion.