Accelerated expansion of renewable energies necessary. Construction of new nuclear power plants as a long-term option.
Not replacing dependence on Russian gas with new dependence on China for the supply of raw materials and components needed for the energy turnaround – this warning has been heard more frequently recently, most recently from EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen (we reported). The consulting firm Capgemini takes the same line in its annual market outlook on global energy markets. In addition to China’s dominance in the market for rare earths, the country is also the world leader in the production of solar modules. This needs to be countered in Europe by a dedicated research and development program. The authors of the report also refer to the example of the USA, where high import duties on Chinese modules have revived domestic production.
In addition to the accelerated expansion of wind energy and photovoltaics, securing the energy supply must now once again be treated as an equal priority, the report continues. In the long term, Cap Gemini also advises the construction of the latest generation of nuclear power plants in this context. At present, such projects, for example in Finland, are struggling with massive delays and cost increases, due among other things to technical complexity.
At the same time, the consulting firm calls for a realistic evaluation of new technology and its potential benefits. Capgemini believes that green hydrogen is currently predestined for use in industries where greenhouse gas emissions can hardly be avoided. The sustainable production of the gas is not yet profitable, and transport is still a challenge.
The 500-page report is available on Capgemini’s website.