Sustainability
Opinion Article
December 14, 2020

Market Research Regarding Sustainable Energy Transition

Demand for energy and renewable sources is increasing. Socioeconomic development is driving a rise in demand for energy in emerging economies, at the same time renewables are increasingly expanding adoption worldwide due to fossil fuel limitations,environment constraints and policy regulations. Renewable sources are also progressively becoming the main generator of electricity, which out of all forms of end-use energy consumption, is the one facing the fastest growth.

The three largest groups of consumers of energy are buildings, transport and industry. If optimistic actions are set in motion across the various segments such as reducing energy consumption and support the expansion of renewables, buildings can ultimately have the largest share of renewable-produced energy followed by industry, while transport can face the highest growth.

Greater investment opportunities will emerge in buildings and transport with new technology and low-carbon policies unlocking new business models in areas like demand flexibility, energy efficiency and e-mobility.

 

Transmission development comes as a result of the rise in demand, generation capacity and the distance that separates these two. These constraints can be addressed through a set of solutions which complemented, meet the requirements of a flexible integrated transmission.

Interconnection is the main solution for intermittency which must be complemented with solid investments in diversification and storage. Global interconnection exploits the fact the levels of irradiation are stronger near the equator and when it is summer in the North Hemisphere it is winter in the South. On another hand,diversification could be deployed through the connection of geographies and sources. Finally, storage capacities rise as there’s a need to get flexibility into the equation. There are already some countries ahead into the process of reaching a fully integrated system, but to achieve higher proportions, actions in system operation, renewable energy deployment and flexible resource planning are required.

 

The generation energy market once dominated by massive coal and oil companies is experiencing changes in line with sustainability.Renewable sources of energy show a historical trend of increasing generating capacity along with reductions of installation and production costs. Future projections expect these trends to continue and the 2050 scenarios show large increases in renewable technologies, total installation capacities and power generation mainly in wind and solar power as well as a great investment opportunity in wind power.

Due to the variable nature of its resources, the increase in the use of renewable sources of energy will be subjected to intermittency issues. Among the ways to tackle this problem the use of multiple types of technologies combined is an approach proved to work. Smaller players have found more space to operate in this much more affordable new market mainly through solar and wind technologies.

 

It is of most importance that nations cooperate to achieve the goal of sustainability for the years to come by embracing technologies, measures and solutions that we know already today that work.

A cleaner energy market will diversify the ecosystem and change the nature of factors to succeed across demand, transmission and generation. Investment opportunities to reach a sustainable energy market will be greater in energy demand and forecasts predict that the total investment per year in all areas combined until 2050 can go up to almost 2.7 trillion dollars, which represents around 3.1% of the World GDP.

The new ecosystem will allow new players to arise and fragment the former highly concentrated market through vertical disintegration, diminishing the power of scale to shape the market. Companies will be encouraged to form partnerships and diversify investments in order to split risks and costs due to high uncertainty about which technologies will ultimately prevail in the future.

Pedro Cruz, José Farinha, Bruno Link

Pedro Cruz, José Farinha, Bruno Link

Pedro Cruz, José Farinha and Bruno Link are recent master graduates of the class of 2020 from Nova SBE. Both Pedro and José concluded their master’s in management while Bruno completed his in finance. They worked together on the final work project, conducting a market research focusing on the transition of the energy market towards a sustainable future, under the guidance of Professor Miguel Pita.

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