Enlit Europe - The Guide: Season 3 June 2021 - A Just Transition - Page 15

commercialised technology for specific applications , high upfront capital costs and balance sheet constraints , weak international regulation and carbon price signals .
In our experience , a limiting factor is also insufficient coordination across industry , finance and government with respect to geographical cluster-based decarbonisation solutions , although Ikigai has been fortunate to be involved in some of the leading projects in the UK in this respect .
It is critical to understand the environment around solutions , manage and align stakeholder interests , while creating valuable and sustainable implementation .
Addressing the energy trilemma is our starting point when decarbonising the demand side : what is important for our customers in terms of affordability , sustainability and security of supply ? It would be foolish of us to think that we can deliver the energy transition by asking businesses to pay for it , especially in a post-COVID scenario where budgets are tight and focused on core business ; we all know that energy is critical but not core to large energy users .
All post-COVID recovery plans across Europe hinge on local variations on the theme of ‘ build back better ’ or ‘ catalysing the green recovery ’. We have a great opportunity to advance the energy transition and foster regional development , while emphasising local manufacturing and supporting the creation of national champion technologies and platforms through commercial scale demonstration of that technology .
In order to deliver a just and sustainable transition in a post-COVID scenario , value creation for stakeholders needs to be at core of every investment plan , with governments supporting the transition with joint regulations across geographies to make sure competitiveness is guaranteed to those that are working hard towards decarbonising their operations .
Regulators need to ensure that green wealth is fairly distributed to industrial heartlands across Europe , rather than industrial clusters being regulated and burdened in such a way that results in job losses and makes the areas less attractive for capital investment .
We also believe that net zero can be achieved in parallel with sustainable economic growth with recovery supported by large-scale private investment in energy and transport projects ( in front and behind the meter ), rather than exclusively by fiscal stimulation .
To attract large scale private investment , we need to focus on creation of value and long-term stable cash flow , risk mitigation and appropriate allocation while working together on a systemsbasis ( ditch that island mode !) in key areas of European excellence .
When we create green solutions for energy intensive consumers financeable off-balance sheet by lower cost capital , we improve industrial profitability and competitiveness .
Financial institutions have a role in creating innovative financial products for corporates , industrial zones and cities to support capital investment in early stage development and construction , while technology providers consider bankability and future proofing for multiple markets in design , and governments set out achievable targets , tax incentives and revenue support for innovative solutions and enabling infrastructure , remove disincentives to decarbonisation on certain fuels and behaviours , and create the conditions for a strong , stable and technology-neutral carbon price .
Ultimately , energy users have a responsibility to challenge the way in which they use energy ( and better understand that use through metering and sensors ) and to engage with local stakeholders on cluster-led systems solutions which optimise value and minimise project-on-project risk .
We have a once-in-a-history opportunity to not only shape the future of the energy sector , but also accelerate the green recovery , provided that we remember there is no energy transition without creation of value .
Helena Anderson is co-founder and COO of Ikigai Group and Roberto Castiglioni is her fellow co-founder and CEO
Find out what Ikigai ’ s Roberto Castigioni has to say on the question , What if the global pandemic accelerated the green transition ?