Innovation Insights – Role of TSO’s in Energy Transition

The energy transition, which entails a fundamental change in the energy supply system, creates new challenges for transmission system operators. In the past, a few large power plants in the transmission grid were responsible for the central provision of energy. Due to the expansion of renewable energies, the number of decentralized power generation facilities is increasing rapidly. These feeders, consumers or storage facilities are mainly connected to the distribution networks. Due to the large number of wind power- and PV systems with mostly weather-dependent generation, a variety of challenges have to be solved. Existing processes must be changed and new technical solutions created. Above all, however, distribution network operators are playing an increasingly important role in the security of electricity supply. At the same time, intensive coordination between distribution and transmission system operators is also becoming increasingly important. This publication is dedicated to the future role of transmission system operators in a flexible energy world and provides recommendations for action.

World Energy Issues Monitor 2020

The annual World Energy Issues Monitor provides unique insight into what energy policymakers, CEOs and leading experts identify as Critical Uncertainties and Action Priorities. New this year, the Issues Monitor also provides readers with the views of the individual customer, detailing their perceptions of their role in the overall energy system. The Issues Monitor report includes a global issues map, 58 country maps, and six regional maps, as well as perspectives from Future Energy Leaders (FEL) and energy innovators. The Issues Monitor and maps offer a range of opportunities for strategic conversations leading to a better understanding of the progression of the energy transition.

The 2020 edition summarizes the views of over  3,000 energy leaders from 104 countries including ministers, chief executives and the heads of the WEC’s national member committees.

Innovation Insights – Energy Storage

As the global electricity systems are shaped by decentralisation, digitalisation and decarbonisation, the World Energy Council’s Innovation Insights Briefs explore the new frontiers in energy transitions and the challenges of keeping pace with fast moving developments. We use leadership interviews to map the state of play and case studies across the whole energy landscape and build a broader and deeper picture of new developments within and beyond the new energy technology value chain and business ecosystem. With major decarbonisation efforts and the scaling up of renewable power generation, the widespread adoption of energy storage continues to be described as the key game changer for electricity systems. Affordable storage systems are a critical missing link between intermittent renewable power and a 24/7 reliability net-zero carbon scenario. We interviewed energy leaders from 17 countries, exploring recent progress in terms of technology, business models and enabling policies. We showcase these in 10 case studies.

World Energy Trilemma Index | 2019

The goals to be achieved in the 'Energy Trilemma' are defined by the World Energy Council (WEC) as

  • secure energy supply,
  • access to affordable energy,
  • sustainability in the generation and consumption of energy.

Each country pursues its own strategy to solve the energy trilemma. In the current Energy Trilemma Index of the WEC 128 countries are judged.

Austria ranks seventh in the current worldwide Trilemma Index Ranking.

World Energy Scenarios 2019

The World Energy Scenarios 2019 report provides an update of the Council’s global energy scenarios. The three musically-named scenarios are:

  • Modern Jazz, which represents a "digitally disrupted" and market-driven innovative world.
  • Unfinished Symphony, a future in which more "intelligent" and circular economic growth models drive clean, affordable and sustainable energy transition and
  • Hard Rock, which explores the consequences of inward-looking policies and weaker and unsustainable economic growth, in a more fragmented world.

The updated World Energy Scenarios provide new insights into the broader and fast-shifting landscape of innovation, which is emerging from within and beyond the energy system and includes not only new energy technologies but also policy, business model and social innovations. The scenarios highlight how different combinations of innovation accelerators –the "Constellations of Disruptions"– might trigger and scale to enable alternative energy pathways and  disrupt existing value chains.

Cyber Challenges to the Energy Transition

The energy sector is experiencing a transformation, new synergies are being realised through linking operational, information technology, and communication systems: the sector’s digital footprint is rapidly expanding. Digitalisation and the development and transformation of energy supply chains are at the core of many government and businesses priorities. At the same time, digitalisation presents new challenges. For example, cyber or digital disruption risk can affect every operation within the supply chain. Digitalisation requires new, agile risk management approaches to match its evolving risk profile and ensure it the energy system continues to be effective and reliable. This Report explores the complexities and interconnections of cyber resilience in an energy system context. It applies the Council’s Dynamic Resilience framework concept as a tool to trace system vulnerabilities and holistic approaches to built-in resilience.

Energy Company of the Future: Rethinking everything

A perfect storm of factors is upending the traditional energy  industry’s economics. In the face of this roiling change, energy companies can no longer proceed with business as usual. Their survival hinges on a bold rethinking of their business and operating models. energy  companies will not only need to transform the role they play in the broader energy industry, but also how they operate, work with their supply ecosystem and interact with end consumers. Digital will be the foundation of this transformation, helping the industry unlock trillions of dollars in new value.

Energy Infrastructure:
Affordability Enabler or Decarbonisation Constraint?

The World Energy Council has launched an exclusive Innovation Insights Brief: Energy Infrastructure: Affordability Enabler or Decarbonisation Constraint? The brief contains key insights from interviews with global leaders across the energy sector. Transitioning to a decarbonised energy system will result in stranded infrastructure assets or lead to their early decommissioning. The Insights Brief responds to the emerging need for a coordinated action plan to minimise costs. It offers a set of principles to design an effective plan for energy infrastructure.

Innovation Insights – Hydrogen Economy

The World Energy Council launched the Innovation Insights Brief: "New Hydrogen Economy - hope or hype?". The brief contains exclusive insights based on interviews with the key global leaders across the energy sector. Interviewees answered the questions about what is new and what are the critical factors for hydrogen as a key actor of the Grand Transition. The Insights Brief provides the reader with an overview of the current state of play for hydrogen as a part of energy transition and showcases emerging opportunities in four sectors: mobility, power, heat and industry. Common to all interviews was the fact that clear and long-term energy policies, along with cross-sector cooperation are necessary for the deployment of hydrogen.

Global Energy Scenarios Comparison Review

In anticipation of the 24th World Energy Congress, the Council is refreshing its global energy foresight and updating its global scenarios narratives. The focus is on an ‘innovation twist to 2040’ and the use of scenarios to explore and navigate new exponential growth opportunities for accelerating successful energy transition in an era of epic and disruptive innovation. As a part of the refresh, the Council has conducted a comparison study of global energy scenarios in order to test the continued plausibility, relevance and challenge of its own existing scenario set. By comparing the methods, narratives and assumptions associated with a benchmarkable set of global energy futures initiatives and studies, the Council seeks to provide our members with clearer understanding and new insights on energy transition while preparing them to better engage with leadership dialogues which pivot on visions of a new energy future.