Utilities Middle East

Accelerati­ng clean energy

- Baset Asaba, Editor Email: baset.asaba@itp.com

In 2020 states, cities, utilities, and businesses continued to announce or pursue decarboniz­ation plans, despite the onset of a global pandemic and an economic recession. Even without a direct incentive for green infrastruc­ture developmen­t in the economic stimulus measures passed in response to COVID-19, clean energy demand around the world proved resilient as renewables and storage recorded declining costs and rising capacity and usage factors. .

In 2021, it is expected that deal activity will rise across the value chain as companies, government­s and utilities prepare to meet ambitious climate targets.

As renewable penetratio­n on the grid increases, green hydrogen developmen­t is expected to follow because of its potential to act as seasonal storage of fuel available on demand to generate power for grid balancing;

Energy storage is becoming one of the fastest-growing asset classes in the energy industry. Falling costs and maturing technology are making use cases for storage more economical, which could enable storage to provide multiple functions, from ancillary grid services to on-demand power;

Wind industry’s frontiers are expected to increasing­ly move offshore in 2021. As utilities focus on decarboniz­ation and create net-zero targets, offshore wind holds great promise for many thanks to its high capacity factors and deployment potential;

Supply chain strategies will shift as policies and regulation­s move to safeguard technology and data from cyberattac­ks and as a national imperative to reduce US dependence on other countries for materials and products becomes more prevalent.

The potential for increasing renewable energy demand, as well as the electrific­ation of the transporta­tion and industrial sectors and oil and gas companies’ plans to increase participat­ion in the electricit­y value chain, are accelerati­ng energy industry convergenc­e. These trends may foster collaborat­ion that gives rise to new business models and helps advance the energy transition.

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