Emerson’s Chief Technology Officer Peter Zornio joined a distinguished panel at the Reuters Energy Transition 2023 Conference in Houston, Texas. The Emergence of a Clean Technology Suite panel was moderated by the Director of OCED in the U.S. Department of Energy. It included leaders from ENEL, Bank of America, and HASI. Here is their session abstract.
How can we accelerate the development and commercialization of low-carbon technologies? What role can public-private partnerships play in promoting innovation? How can we ensure that emerging technologies are developed in a way that is equitable and accessible to all?
- Discover how to overcome investor challenges to make low-carbon energy technology development and commercialization a reality for your company
- Understand what is needed to get ahead of the curve when it comes to new clean technology and identify safe and sustainable projects during early stages of development
- Explore the current challenges around green premiums, cost escalation, and cost competitiveness relative to traditional fossil fuels
Peter commented that Emerson supplies the automation technologies for all the emerging energy solutions, having long been established with traditional energy suppliers. He joked that Emerson “supplies the running shoes” for everyone in the race toward new non-carbon forms of energy.
Peter shared that many sustainability-related businesses, such as hydrogen producers, battery manufacturers, and new processes for plastic recycling, are quite capital-intensive and require financing and favorable policies to advance beyond the proof-of-concept phase.
The effect of the Inflation Reduction Act was to provide financing for many of these decarbonization-related innovations. This method of giving tax credits was significant in the past in growing the solar, wind, and renewable energy industries. The other effect is to reshore many industries that had left the U.S. in previous decades.
He was asked about game-changing solutions that are needed to continue to advance progress. He noted that the electrical grid needed much enhancement and standardization with greater intelligence out at the edge of the grid. Standardization is needed for everything from EV car chargers to transformers on electric power distribution networks. It can also drive greater reliability and cost savings.
Peter highlighted many investments in managing complex grids increasingly distributed with baseload and intermittent energy sources. Community considerations are a significant consideration. Understanding the benefits of jobs, tax revenues, and community growth is essential. Permitting is a huge hurdle as well in dealing with local, state, and federal entities.
When asked which innovations the panelists are most excited about, Peter pointed to the advancements in small modular reactors (SMRs) as an essential development in decarbonized electrical power generation.
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