In order to meet targets set out in the Paris agreement, we need to make a global transition to low carbon energy systems. Many countries are facing the same challenges: capping or reducing energy demand, while at the same time increasing the proportion of energy generated from renewables.

European countries including Switzerland and Germany are phasing out nuclear energy, which will eliminate a significant source of low carbon energy and leave a power capacity deficit. How can this energy gap be filled? Models suggest that the only viable possibilities to fill the gap in Switzerland are to expand energy production through natural gas, or to import energy from neighbouring  countries. Both solutions are sub-optimal. Companies are generally reluctant to invest in natural gas because of communications & marketing pitfalls. The second option of energy import bears its own problems, as it is a shifting the problem to another country rather than finding a solution.

  • What will be the scale of the energy gap? Energy consumption is expected to grow, but it is uncertain by how much. To what extent can demand-reduction measures close the energy gap?
  • To what extent can renewables cover the future energy demand in Switzerland?
  • What role do / can government bodies, utilities, NGOs and corporations play in filling the energy gap?
  • Renewables often generate energy in locations that are far away from places where energy is consumed, and this requires a big investment in energy grids. Who will pay?
  • How can utilities balance their needs to provide energy to the public, make profit, maintain positive public perception, and reduce their CO2 outputs?
  • International conventions follow the territorial principle, meaning that only direct emissions of fossil fuels burned within national borders are counted as part of the national carbon budget. Is it therefore, the “easy way out” for Switzerland to import CO2 intensive electricity from other countries to fill the electricity gap?

Energy policy is dependent on climate policy – if Switzerland decides to meet 60% of their energy commitments through domestic interventions (rather than 40%), then the energy gap will be smaller.

Join GreenBuzz Zurich to participate in the discussion about the energy transition in Switzerland and abroad.

Who is it for?

Researchers working on energy topics, public sector professionals working on energy policy and strategy implementation, professionals working at utilities, corporate professionals from different sectors who are working on topics related to energy supply and demand. Also for sustainability professionals who are not working on energy topics but who could contribute new perspectives to the topic.

Programme

18:00 – 18:30 Registration

18:30 – 18:45 Welcome by GreenBuzz, By host / sponsor

18:45 – 19:45 TBA

19:45 – 19:55 Wrap-up

19:55 – 21:30 Apero / Buzzing

What: Thematic Evening: Addressing the Energy Transition: Filling the Gap.

When: Tuesday 29th of October 2019, 18:00 – 21:30

Where: WWF Switzerland, Hohlstrasse 110, Zurich

Employees of our corporate partners can gain free tickets for this event. Please check here if your employer is a member of GreenBuzz and use your corporate discount code to register.