As climate change and the energy transition drive fundamental shifts in technology, industry, investment and regulatory policy, innovation and technology have never played a more important role. In this article, we discuss how climate change and the energy transition are driving these shifts, the technologies needed to meet net-zero and how this is reflected by patent filings in renewable energy field. We gather the perspectives of leaders and decision makers in the fields of energy, technology, business and government, presenting at the recent CERAWeek 2021 conference.
Insights: net zero emissions
£92 million allocated to funding energy storage, floating wind, and sustainable biomass production in the UK
This week, the UK government launched 3 new innovation challenges in the green energy sector, with £92 million allocated in funding. The initiative is part of the government’s £1 billion Net Zero Innovation Portfolio to drive forward the next generation of technologies which will help decarbonise the energy sector in the UK. It also forms part of the UK Governments 10 point plan, launched last year, to achieve net-zero CO2 emissions by 2050.
As countries around the world strive to curb climate change, it becomes increasingly clear that radical innovative energy solutions are needed if we are to stand any chance of achieving net zero emissions. A team of engineers at the University of Queensland may have provided one such solution in the field of quantum dot solar cell technology, achieving a near 25% improvement, and a world record, for the conversion of solar energy into electricity using quantum dots. Inventor, and Australian Research Council laureate, Lianzhou Wang, explains that the improvement “is effectively the difference between quantum dot solar cell technology being an exciting prospect and being commercially viable”.