Innovation is everywhere. Information technology has fundamentally changed many aspects of our lives and the energy industry is no exception. Simply, the increased demand for energy to run IT systems has already shown to be a driving force for change and adaptation among market players. For the economy to flourish and thrive, a stable, reliable energy supply is more paramount than ever. So too has the increased demand for energy increased the risk of failure of the system and increased the potential for greater disruption in such events. Innovation of the future will have to address issues of energy shortfall owing to capacity shortages and demand increases.
Shifts in the use of technology are also shaping and guiding the direction of innovation. These shifts can be fostered through regulation and intervention by way of subsidies or tariffs but may also develop organically or in response to a specific need. We continue to see innovation in many areas of the energy industry; none perhaps more prevalent than in the green energy space.
Innovation can be met with resistance, and there will always be varying opinions on where and how to allocate finite resources. Innovation is best fostered when there is wider cooperation and a larger common goal. The desire to reduce carbon outputs and increase the use of green energy has been one of the main driving forces of innovation and it is a great case-study to see the adaptive capabilities of the overall energy markets. One of the next major impacts and innovation spaces will likely be transportation. We are already experiencing a change in the way we transport ourselves and our goods caused in part by rising fuel costs and costs of energy. Electric vehicles and battery technology go hand in hand and innovations in these areas will have cross-sector implications.