The key to 70% reductions
While it is possible to achieve innovation and green solutions at a sector level, the big green prize lies in thinking across sectors and combining the energy systems of transportation, agriculture, the energy sector, and the industrial sector.
The energy system of the future has two criteria for success: It needs to deliver a stable supply of sustainable energy, and it needs to be able to store the energy. So how is that possible? The answer is sector coupling or sector integration – a concept that allows the surplus energy from one sector to be stored in another.
Step 1: Electrification
Creating a green transition means building a society entirely run on sustainable energy.
In order to achieve that, the first step is electrification. Everything must run on electricity – from the heat sector to the industrial sector, the building sector, and the transportation sector which today is heavily dependent on coal, oil, gas, gasoline, diesel etc.
Step 2: The storage challenge
Besides finding solutions for the successful electrification of society, we also need a solution for storing the surplus energy from a wind turbine generated on a stormy day. We need to be able to store it as heated water for instance for the district heating system. That may sound like science fiction, but it is highly possible, and indeed, we are doing it at GreenLab right now
The GreenLab model
At GreenLab, we call ourselves the world’s first truly green industrial park. One of the reasons we dare make such a bold statement is our SymbiosisNet. The SymbiosisNet is an intelligent network of data and energy that allows the companies in our industrial park to share their excess resources with each other – and it is a great example of what sector coupling can look like. We are also building one of the world’s first Power-to-X production facilities and in a few years, we will be a large-scale example of a sustainable industrial business case.
The next wind adventure
Denmark made a green name for itself in the 1970’s when we excelled in wind energy as one of the pioneers in the field. Today, the challenge is not so much harvesting the sustainable energy, but how to make the most of the fluctuating stream of energy it provides. If we solve that problem, we are well on our way to reaching the 70% CO2-reductions that are the next milestone – and GreenLab is showing how it can be done.