Since the discovery by humans that we could harness natural resources to create power, there has been a constant stream of development in this sector. From the earliest cavemen lighting fires to complex technologies that underpin modern power generation, our ingenuity is seemingly boundless. And, this doesn’t look like it will be slowing down anytime soon. Scientists are really just getting started when it comes to energy generation and it is truly fascinating to speculate at what might emerge in the near future that will power the world of tomorrow.
Here are some of the ways the power sector is expected to change over the next few decades.
There is a huge amount of electrification going on in various sectors of society. Vehicles and heating are two of the main areas where electrification is prominent. However, the rate of early adoption for electric technology is low and the uptake has generally been slow. However, old regulations and legislation are being revised and new infrastructures are being installed with the aim of making electrification more widespread and mainstream.
No-one likes the idea of having a central body controlling all of the power. That is why Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies have become so popular. There has been a notable shift towards decentralisation in the power sector as more and more individuals are looking at ways to generate their own energy. As the cost of generating solar power has plummeted over recent yeas, this has become one of the most common ways for individuals to create their own power, through the use of photovoltaic panels.
As a society we are becoming more and more connected. We can now control our homes through one central remote controller and we can use smart metering to monitor and then reduce our energy usage and expenditure. Automation has also been an important factor in the digitalisation of the energy sector. This has maximised quality and yields whilst keeping energy usage to a minimum. Now, we are seeing the use of drones and other technologies to further enhance the efficiency of the energy sector.
The Bid for the Environment
The question of how we are going to bring the environment back from the brink of destruction is in the back of everyone’s mind – especially power companies. The public is looking harder than ever at where investment of its money is going and they will no longer tolerate it being poured into fossil fuels. Companies now need to factor the environment into their processes to keep the people happy. Thus, energy companies are looking for the most efficient and least environmentally harmful way to generate energy and this is changing the face of the sector.
Changes in Demand
We have looked at how the face of the power sector is changing from the supply side, but it is important to also consider the demand aspect. Digital technologies and data analytics are changing the way we consume energy. We can more effectively reduce our consumption on an individual basis. On a corporate level, energy efficiency targets are reducing the amount of energy being consumed by the industry.