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New Energy World magazine logo
New Energy World magazine logo
ISSN 2753-7757 (Online)

Transition technology: no time for unicorns


10 min read

Panel of speakers sitting on stage with presentation screen behind and audience in front Photo: Oliver Dixon Photography, for the Energy Institute
Positive change: negative emissions – an opportunity to see industry response to the energy transition and suggestions for action. Panel (left to right): Dominic Martin, Equinor; Nancy Gillis, World Economic Forum; Michael Alsford, Storegga; Graeme Davies, Harbour Energy; Jean-Francois Gauthier, GHGSat; Ruth Herbert, CCSA

Photo: Oliver Dixon Photography, for the Energy Institute

Day two of International Energy Week 2023 focused on technology opportunities in the energy transition, with an emphasis on innovation and changing business models. The presenters felt there was no time for ‘unicorns’ (breakthrough technologies) as opposed to the incremental development of established solutions on the road to net zero. New Energy World's Brian Davis reports.

One of the most innovative renewable energy champions, Greg Jackson, Founder and Chief Executive of Octopus Energy, kicked off the day with a fascinating discussion with Mohammed Jameel Al Ramahi, CEO of Masdar. Al Ramahi emphasised how the green initiative was taken by the United Arab Emirates’ President back in 2006 for 7% of the Abu Dhabi energy mix to come from renewables by 2020. This was an ambitious goal which ‘totally shocked the power community, as we started in the oil and gas business', he said. Nevertheless, turning Masdar into a renewable energy company ‘was one of the best choices after marrying my wife!’, he quipped.


Today Masdar is focused on green renewable energy in 40 countries, covering onshore wind, offshore wind and solar PV, as well as becoming a strategic investor in a geothermal project in Jakarta. Masdar’s target is 100 GW of renewables by 2030.


Al Ramahi emphasised the importance of partnership, and said: ‘It’s part of our DNA, with projects round the world.’ He sees the UK as a global hub for offshore wind developments and announced a £1bn investment there to accelerate battery storage solutions.


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