BIEE Conference 2021: Energy for a Net Zero Society – Keynote & Plenary Speaker Presentations

Monday 13 September

Welcome – Gareth Miller, CEO, Cornwall Insight

Welcome - Gareth Miller, Cornwall Insight

First Plenary Session: Keeping warm and staying cool in a net zero society

Our societal need to keep warm and stay cool in homes and workspaces drives a major slice of current greenhouse gas emissions. To reach net zero we will need to transform energy systems for heating and cooling. Analysis suggests that this will be hugely challenging, involving a range of solutions across different regions, building types and end users. Big questions around how to deliver heat load in winter without excess cost of idle capacity in summer, the right combination of building efficiency improvement, new fuels  (hydrogen, bio-methane, steam, etc.) and potentially a range of seasonal storage and flexibility remain to be resolved. Now with the adoption of a net zero target, is a timely moment for strategic new thinking around how to shape markets, share costs, harness UK capabilities and reconcile regional priorities to deliver zero carbon energy for buildings.

What next for buildings policy as part of a Net Zero resilient society?
Jenny Hill, Head of Buildings and International Action, Committee on Climate Change

What next for buildings policy as part of a Net Zero resilient society?

Challenges in Heat Decarbonisation
Dr James Richardson, Chief Economist, NIC

Tuesday 14 September

Welcome – Anna Moss, Head of Consumer Markets, Cornwall Insight

Welcome - Anna Moss, Cornwall Insight

Keynote Address: Energy for a Net Zero Society – Laura Sandys CBE, CEO, Challenging Ideas

Keynote Address - Laura Sandys, Challenging Ideas

Second Plenary Session: Mobility in a net zero society

The electrification of personal transport now seems inevitable. The substantial electrification of road freight is also possible, though dependent on how the technology options, including batteries, catenaries and hydrogen, develop. There remain many other uncertainties along the way, depending on developments in road and charging infrastructure, autonomous vehicles, shared ownership, flexible working in time and place, and smart grids. But it is not just a technology story. What is the contribution to emissions reduction from changes on the demand-side? Experience in the COVID-19 lockdown has demonstrated big increases in remote working, and in cycling. How might these develop? How much further can business travel adjust? Finally, what are the options for aviation and shipping, and – in respect of the former – for constraining demand.

The Road to Net Zero: delivering the Transport Decarbonisation Plan
Richard Bruce, Director of Energy, Technology and Innovation, Department for Transport

The Road to Net Zero: delivering the Transport Decarbonisation Plan

Decarbonising Transport: what can be done by 2030?
Prof Jillian Anable, Chair in Transport and Energy, ITS, University of Leeds

Why are we still buying petrol or diesel cars – and what’s holding us back going fully electric tomorrow?
Fiona Howarth, CEO, Octopus Electric Vehicles

Why are we still buying petrol or diesel cars...

Third Plenary Session: Jobs prosperity and production in a net zero society

Industrial activities and commercial operations have distinct bespoke requirements in terms of heat and motion they derive from the energy sources they use. This affects all aspects of the productive economy from energy intensity, carbon footprint, innovation and employment. The way these needs can be met in future will determine how zero carbon processes are embedded in the macro economy, and will explore where there are tensions in terms of the cost to GDP of decarbonisation, as well as the opportunities that may arise for the zero carbon economy to be more efficient than the high carbon one. Finally the session will ideally cover the financial implications of the decarbonised economy and, in particular the different options for the required investment to be raised: whether from the private sector, governments or consumers. This has implications for the structure of society – how to make the zero carbon society works for all and no-one gets left behind due to, for example, financial or digital exclusion.

Net Zero: the Investment and Cost Story
Chris Stark, CEO, The Committee on Climate Change

Powering the Zero Carbon Economy
Rebecca Sedler, Corporate Policy and Regulation Director, EDF Energy

Powering the Zero Carbon Economy

Innovation, Productivity and the Net Zero Economy
Filippo Gaddo, Director, Energy Economics and Regulation, Arup

Innovation, Productivity and the Net Zero Economy

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