All Energy and Decarbonise 2023

Market Insight
George Roffey, Sustainability Officer - Centrus

All Energy and Decarbonise, Glasgow 2023

I made my inaugural visit to the All Energy and Decarbonise conference in Glasgow SEC last week with members of our Infrastructure and Energy Transition team , whose positive feedback on the event was unanimous: it was a productive, dynamic occasion, well attended by key players in the energy transition network.

Below is a snapshot of what I found to be the most compelling messages cutting through.  

Less mouth more trousers

Globally we have bold 2030 investment and 2050 net zero commitments in place, but as the clock ticks and the breaching of our planetary boundaries becomes increasingly terrifying; the time for talk has passed and we need action and delivery. 

In Glasgow, it was reassuring to see the huge range of technology and project development that is already on the table. Exhibitors showed off pioneering assets across wind, solar, hydrogen, marine, private wire, hydro, interconnection, carbon sequestration and energy storage.  With consumer expectations adding huge weight to the support they need, we are seeing decisions on execution and investors becoming bolder with the risks they are taking.  Private and Public Sector funds are now going where the problems are.

Swap the plans and promises with action

The presenter’s lineup was strong.  In the opening plenary session, Jacqueline McLaren, The Lord Provost of Glasgow, Humza Yousaf, First Minister of Scotland, David Bunch, Country Chair of Shell, Chris Stark, CEO of the Climate Change Committee and Susan Aitken the Leader of Glasgow City Council took to the stand.  They shared their concerns and conflicts, but they also shared their commitment, raising their hands to admit that disagreements need to be put aside.  Together they recognised that scientific, public, corporate, council and government teams need to collaborate on the common net zero targets if we have any chance.  This hope was backed up by the exhibitor population from across all pieces of the puzzle.  The development across the renewable energy product life cycle is gathering pace every week and it was underpinned by a common theme of less talk and more action.

‘Just’ must be everywhere

The other message that resonated for me was the recognition that the word ‘just’ has to play a key part in every component of energy transition.  We must show that we have learned lessons from damage done by industrial change in the past – all close to home in Glasgow.  We must include the education, social and people impact at every step of the way.  Recognising the jobs and education opportunities that the green economy must grow was shouted about by the strong academic research in the visitor population as well as the carbon literacy and renewable energy studies from the students in attendance.  It was impressive stuff.

Centrus exhibited in a central hot spot for attendee footfall: we were neighboured by Tesla, The University of Edinburgh, Shell and ETZ.  The contributions from our energy transition and infrastructure corporate advisory team were very strong, with everyone working hard to show off the Centrus brand, our sector expertise and our credentials.  We connected with over 100 new and existing contacts and will reach out to identify opportunities where we can provide support.  B Corp as a certification was relatively unknown to this audience, (with the exception of Thrive Renewables PLC) and our B Corp branding raised many interesting discussions about the value of using your business as a force for good.

There was lots of promise: I hope that the pioneering ambition of Scotland’s renewable energy transition that was shown off at All Energy Glasgow 2023 translates into further operational examples by this time next year.

If you want to discuss the event, the themes arising or the role that Centrus is playing, please get in touch with George Roffey, Sustainability Officer – Centrus.