Change is upon the energy systems around the world. Research by McKinsey and the World Economic Forum has identified the game changers and implications for energy companies and policy makers. In Three game changers for energy, McKinsey provides a summary of their findings.
Twenty new energy sources could power the world’s economy within two decades including technologies such as fuel cells or nuclear fusion. While McKinsey and the World Economic Forum expect fossil fuels to continue to contribute to the energy mix, its share will be reduced due to increasing environmental concerns, lower costs for renewables and higher electricity demands. On the other hand, a quarter of the global electric power could be produced by low-carbon energy sources such as wind and solar by 2050. “In tomorrow’s world, access to the technologies that harness resources such as wind, sun, water, or heat from the earth’s core is likely to matter most,” reads the summary.
The drive to reduce pollution, congestion and carbon emissions will also change the way how we move. By the mid-2020s, McKinsey expects electric vehicles to become competitive due to falling batterie prices. About ten years later, they could account for between 27 and 37 percent of new vehicle sales. Besides threatening the business of oil companies, rapidly changing mobility patterns also impact the world of city planners.
For the last decades, large companies have dominated the energy market. As new energy sources emerge, technologies are now being used by many smaller operators, both businesses and consumers. Significant investments locking companies in for decades are now becoming too risky, says McKinsey, and strategic choices need to be adjusted rapidly without threatening substantial initial investments.