Energy sector needs to be ‘smarter, not just stronger’: WEC

A new report from the World Energy Council has found policy frameworks and financing mechanisms are necessary to develop ‘smarter, not just stronger’ energy markets.

The Road to Resilience: Financing resilient energy infrastructure report released this month has warned the triple threat of extreme weather events, energy-water-food nexus and cyber threats are emerging as critical risks for the global energy market to address.

WEC secretary-general Christoph Frei said accelerating energy systems integration meant resilience is no longer about returning single assets to full operation after a disruption.

“When interdependent parts of a system are blacked out, the system as a whole is at risk of being deadlocked,” he said.

According to the report, 98% of the world’s power supply is at the mercy of water availability. Both water and food production are increasingly becoming a global issue – both of which require large amounts of energy to produce.

The report notes extreme weather events have more than quadrupled over the 40 years, and the impact this has on energy systems is blackouts, closure of nuclear plants due to heatwaves and hydropower being stifled due to drought.

Diversifying the energy market would also inoculate the energy market from cyber attacks, through improved access to a greater variety of IT solutions. Digitalisation of the energy sector has improved storage and sharing of both data and energy, but increased vulnerabilities.

For more information or to read the report, click here.