The energy transition requires both smarter production of clean energy as well as new, practical infrastructure to enable its use, explains Umberto Tamburrino, CEO of Sosteneo Infrastructure Partners, a company within the Generali Investments ecosystem of asset management firms, which specialises in greenfield investing.
On January 8th, 2021 Europe’s transmission grid effectively split into two as it attempted to maintain regulation frequency of 50 Hz. The problem started in Croatia but blackouts were experienced at 200,000 homes and factories across Europe. Households in France were told to keep the lights off between 7am and 1pm.
The UK had experienced an even greater blackout eighteen months earlier when a major windfarm was shut down just as lightning struck a transmission cable for a gas-fired combined cycle plant. It is an irony lost on many that the rapid adoption of renewable energy is likely to cause not fewer but more of these disruptions to daily life. Yes, wind and solar are free at source. Yes, local wind farms and solar arrays reduce reliance on imported fossil fuel, therefore boosting energy security. But, as Umberto Tamburrino, CEO of Sosteneo Infrastructure Partners – a company within the Generali Investments ecosystem of asset management firms – points out, they also give operators of electricity networks an increasing headache of how to balance power.
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