A well-developed energy infrastructure – the cables that transport electricity and the pipelines that transport molecules – is a pre-requisite for a successful clean energy transition. Yet, the planning and building of energy infrastructure has not received the attention it deserves with most policy debates focussing on the scaling of renewable energies or on market rules for power, gas, and hydrogen.
One big shortcoming is that infrastructure planning in Europe is still done separately for cables and pipelines. The power, heat, hydrogen, and transport maps should be looked at together, since electrification plays a leading role in the decarbonisation of all sectors. Power grids and offshore interconnectors will need to be built faster to correspond to the renewable energy deployment needs, while investments in energy storage and carbon capture and storage as well as in the flexibilisation and digitisation of the energy system need to be scaled up significantly.
At this event, we discussed how moving away from fossil fuels is more than just a fuel change – it is a transformation of the way we design, build and invest in the infrastructure for a net-zero future. The event was organised by Agora Energiewende together with the Regulatory Assistance Project, Energy Cities, and Foresight Climate and Energy.
Findings from recent Agora reports on the need to manage gas distribution grids in Germany (LINK) and the phase-out of fossil gas in the EU (LINK) feeded into the discussion. Michael Liebreich, leading global expert on clean energy and infrastructure will set the stage with a keynote speech; other confirmed speakers include Jens Geier, Member of the European Parliament and lead rapporteur on the EU Gas Markets Directive; Dennis Hesseling from the International Energy Agency; and Frauke Thies, Executive Director of Agora Energiewende. The full list of panellists will be announced soon.
The programme can be found in the download section below.
The slides can be found in the download section below.
We have recorded the event. The recording can be found above.
Planning and building the energy infrastructure for a net-zero future
Representation of NorthRhine Westfalia
47 Rue Montoyer