In our March iFriday edition, we discussed innovation, energy, and sustainability. We had a chat with Marcelino Oreja, CEO of Enegás, one of the leading companies in natural gas infrastructures globally.
Redefining the future of the power sector
The necessity to combat global warming is accelerating the transition to renewable energies. Great corporations and public institutions are bringing attention to the development of innovative projects that must, bit by bit, transform our energy model.
Undoubtedly, the power sector, responsible for 80% of greenhouse gas emissions, will play a fundamental role in the fight against climate change in the following years.
“We are replacing some equipment and gas consumption with renewable, electric power. We are amid a decarbonization process in which we have committed ourselves to be carbon neutral by 2040. We have come from emitting half a million tonnes of CO2 in 2014 to under 200,000 this year. Furthermore, we will reduce these remains with new technologies from 2030 onwards. We apply innovation in this process, and we seek to invest in companies that pursue reducing the carbon footprint with new technologies”, points out Marcelino Oreja, CEO of Enagás.
In this more environmentally conscious future, green hydrogen will be a crucial alternative to energetic revolution towards a more sustainable model. Green hydrogen is an almost unlimited resource, with a high ability to be stored, and is likely to be the solution to most of the problems of the present power sources.
According to Enagás’ executive, “Hydrogen will become key. These days there is a lot of talk about green hydrogen, which comes from renewable energies, and blue hydrogen, created from natural gas, by storing the CO2 byproduct resulting from the hydrogen production process. I believe both will make their way in the coming years”.
Innovation and sustainability, an indispensable binomial
Innovation and sustainability are closely related concepts. More and more great companies every day implement innovative projects, initiatives, and solutions in their roadmap with the goal in mind to improve and protect the environment and advance towards a more sustainable world.
Enagás is placing a big bet on sustainability, contributing with its actions, projects, policies, and commitment to achieving the SDG. In this sense, the company has reduced its emissions by 63.2% between 2014 and 2020. Additionally, the company has more than 50 distinct projects for the improvement of energy efficiency.
Innovation has played a fundamental role in the group’s strategy to reach these goals and position itself as a global role model in sustainability. Like Sacyr, for years, Enagas has backed an open innovation model based on collaboration with external innovation agents and intrapreneurship.
“We seek to diversify ourselves and new activities, and to this end, innovation has been crucial. Entrepreneurship has been the lever that has allowed us to innovate in our processes. Now we combine our internal expertise with external talent, with those companies that can work with our employees and present new projects”, points out Marcelino Oreja, CEO of Enagás.
Energy transition, a priority for the ‘Next Generation’ funds
The energy transition is one of the integral pillars set by Europe in the Next Generation funds, the European incentive program to boost the development of the countries most affected by the pandemic. Experts point out that Spain will receive around 150,000 million euros from these funds as loans and grants.
Undoubtedly, a historic event for sector-leading companies, like Enagás. "It is a great opportunity, as long as we use it to remodel the economic fabric, to create stable employment, to industrialize the country, and to transform and reduce emissions", concludes Marcelino Oreja, CEO of Enagás.