A “power shift” is taking place within the energy industry as a result of the convergence of energy, technology and the drive for sustainability.
The ensuing disruption will open up major challenges and opportunities for citizens, policymakers, utilities and other stakeholders. Against this backdrop, a summit on the future of energy is taking place this week, to challenge long-standing assumptions on energy and start a conversation on how connectivity will shape its future.
The event, organised by the ESB and the Institute of International and European Affairs, will explore topics such as the role of the consumer as an active participant in distributed energy, the connected home and the connected car, the latest trends in energy investment, new business models for the future of the utility and the emerging EU policy context of energy union.
“Technology is enabling profound changes in the way that we generate and consume energy, and this has huge implications not just for the energy sector, but also for society as a whole and our economy,” ESB chief executive Pat O’Doherty said.
Amory Lovins, chief scientist of the Rocky Mountain Institute, will deliver a video address on disruption in the electricity sector. Named by Time magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world, Mr Lovins is among the world's leading innovators in energy and its links with resources, economy, development, security and environment.
Other speakers will include Nest head of energy Andy Baynes, Tesla vice-president for business development Diarmuid O'Connell, Glen Dimplex chief executive Seán O'Driscoll and Dr Eleni Pratisini, director of IBM-Research (Ireland).