Already pressured by the beginning of a new decade and the alarming call for greener practices, energy companies stepped into 2020 motivated to transform and innovate the industry. Today, with COVID19’s hit, the need to reassess the path to tomorrow becomes vital.
What does the trajectory look like now? What are the trends that will be shaping the industry’s future?
At the core, there are three major underpinning themes that must be tackled by this new direction:
- Decarbonization – Transitioning towards a clean and carbon-free economy by integrating and increasing the share of renewable energy sources
- Decentralization – Breaking down the condensed geographic pattern of electricity distribution
- Digitization – Integrating digital machines and devices across all the levels of the power system. This allows to break down boundaries between energy sectors and enable integration across systems.
On this note, we’ve highlighted four of this year’s most promising trends for the Energy sector:
Strengthening the growth of Renewables
The growing energy demand and the need to reduce CO2 emissions offers the ideal crossroad to keep developing renewable energy. Powered by sources from the environment, innovation comes in processing these into electricity and fuels. The increasing range of processes and technologies developed for this purpose is the biggest trend of this year, especially when they are tailored towards reducing manufacturing costs, increasing energy penetration and maximizing efficiency.
Internet of Energy
IoE is the integration of the Internet of Things (IoT) into the energy sector. IoT works by creating networks of sensors to measure specific items. In energy, this technology can balance energy demand. This means that power stations using IoE could analyze peak times and produce more electricity during these time points, while lessening the production rate whenever consumption is low. Ultimately, this trend can improve the distribution of energy demand, optimize efficiency of energy infrastructure and reduce energy wastage.
Simply put, energy storage works by storing electrical energy so it is available whenever. Consumers can purchase energy for future consumption, accumulate it in their storage battery and help reduce the grid’s load during peak time. Now, companies are trying to design these batteries so that they have an accessible price for most people. So far, lithium-ion batteries seem to be a strong contender, and their costs could continue to drop as the demand for storage installations around the world multiply.
This technology aims to decentralize energy stakeholders. With Blockchain, producers, distributors, operators and traders can ensure all energy-related transactions go through a secure and immutable network, reducing financial and operational risks. Blockchain is now also aiming to leverage the ground between producers and consumers, by making electricity more affordable for more people.
With a couple of months left to the year, there is more yet to be seen. But, so far, energy seem to hold a promising future.