This year the Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue (BETD) was held virtually on March 16-17, 2021 with decarbonization as its theme. At the dialogue, Jochen Eickholt, Member of the Executive Board of Siemens Energy talked about the company’s decarbonization targets for the future, role of transmission and grid stabilization technologies, role of clean gas green hydrogen to assist the energy transition and future outlook. Edited excerpts…
Siemens Energy can contribute a lot to decarbonize the power sector. The company has aims to become carbon neutral in its operations by 2030. By 2023, we want to make sure all the electricity the company uses comes from renewable energy. Already, 50 per cent of our portfolio is “green”. Siemens Energy is the majority stakeholder of Siemens Gamesa which is a leading supplier of wind solutions. We are a major player in offshore wind solutions as well across regions and are strongly positioned for this emerging segment in the future.
On transmission and grid stabilization technologies
Our transmission technologies are a strong business vertical as well. This business vertical has a significant value as the distance between power generation and consumption is becoming longer and also keeps on changing. In this context, it is important to also consider grid stability. To this end, in Germany we have signed a partnership with one of our clients on grid stabilization technologies. This will be of high relevance for our company.
“We have to understand that the change from coal generation plants to clean energy is going to be massive. In Europe alone, this transition is to the tune of 160 GW, happening in a short period of time.”
Role of clean gas technologies
Times are changing in the fossil fuel side of our portfolio too. We are promoting green technologies for industrial applications. These technologies are compliant with requirements of our customers including BP, Shell, Total. We have to understand that the change from coal generation plants to clean energy is going to be massive. In Europe alone, this transition is to the tune of 160 GW, happening in a short period of time. Therefore, we need to consider clean gas technologies for power generation also to assist this transition. In sum, our renewable energy portfolio is already quite clean and is expected to become cleaner going forward.
Role of green hydrogen, green methanol and Poxer-to-X solutions
It should be noted that many industrial sectors like shipping, aviation, road transportation still rely on fossil fuels. According to me, in the future this will change. There will be a growing uptake of Power-to-X solutions with a greater focus on hydrogen and related synthetic fuels. In this space, we are currently working on green hydrogen projects in Chile where renewable energy is used to power the electrolysers. Also, with the help of compression technologies, carbon dioxide will be separated from the air which will be used along with green hydrogen to form green methanol. In the pilot stage, we plan to produce around 130,000 litres of e-fuels by 2022. By 2024 we plan to scale up and produce around 55 million litres of e-fuels. And by 2026, we plan to take this number up to 550 million litres. We plan to focus on similar projects in the future.
“In the pilot stage, we plan to produce around 130,000 litres of e-fuels by 2022. By 2024 we plan to scale up and produce around 55 million litres of e-fuels. And by 2026, we plan to take this number up to 550 million litres.”
The future of energy transition is going to be more complex than the past. Urban regions will play a crucial role in this energy transition. In these regions, various kinds of technologies will be used – photovoltaics, wind energy, hydrogen blending in gas (depending on commercial conditions). In addition, storage technologies will also be utilized.
The use of electric power to generate heat will be the norm in the future. In this space, the concept of district heating will play a much greater role going forward. It will be key to provide individual solutions for different regions.
Above edited extracts are based on the session video available on BETD2021’s portal. The full and original video can be accessed by clicking here