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ADIPEC 2023: Tech's role in effective transition

Showcasing the power of technology in delivering a just and effective energy transition, at scale, was in sharp focus on day three of ADIPEC, the world’s largest energy exhibition and conference in Abu Dhabi 

Bringing together more than 40 ministers, 100s of C-suite executives and experts from energy, technology, finance and academia, the third day of the conference continued to plot the industry’s energy transition and the role of technology in facilitating it. 

Thomas Storch, managing director, Affinity Partners, summarised the wave of innovation soaking through the industry, “One of the things which makes me the most optimistic about the future is that we are seeing this groundswell of innovation across every vertical. Across areas such as energy efficiency and storage, we have incredible minds every day waking up and coming up with the next innovation. The pathway to net zero will rest on innovation.”

The day opened with a strategic panel discussion on scaling up technology for an efficient and sustainable transition, with leaders from globally recognised technology companies sharing their insights into how technology is a key enabler in the energy transition, whether it be supporting industries, businesses or governments, to decarbonise, or how to find effective solutions to mitigate emissions and improve performance. With experts and innovators from AspenTech, TechnipFMC, AVEVA, Wartsila, ADNOC, AWS and Crystol Energy, the discussion centred on the importance of fast-tracking technology adoption and facilitating wider deployment of sustainable innovations throughout the value chain. 

Commenting on the potential of technology to transform the energy sector, Håkan Agnevall, president and CEO of Wartsila said, "We are living in times where we can really set the stage for the future. Looking at many of the reputable companies here, we have the technology, or we will in a very short time. The big thing is the social transformation and the capital, which is not an easy thing. That's why we need to have these kinds of events to come together."

This was followed by a panel which explored the necessity of levelling up supply chains in order to boost demand, lower costs, encourage greater flexibility and incentivise innovation within the industry. The discussion was focused on vulnerabilities exposed by recent volatility, and the importance of ensuring that supply chains are resilient enough to withstand shocks and continue to deliver the goods and services critical for business and society. 

Industry experts shared their experiences of making this a reality within their sector and beyond, including Martin Helwig, CEO of P&O Logistics, Ichiro Takahara, CEO of JOGMEC, Ken Gilmartin CEO of Wood and Berislav Gaso, EVP Energy, OMV. 

In summarising the discussion, Ken Gilmartin CEO of Wood made the point that, “The supply chain is key, it is the engine that is going to power the energy transition. You look at where we are globally, everybody is ready, we are just waiting for the investment. The piece that we are all debating is the pace, and where we need to invest. But there is belief that we need to get after this, we need to be more resolute, and we need to accelerate. It starts with decarbonisation, and we have to get after decarbonisation through the lens of energy security”.

ADIPEC’s unique ability to unite policymakers, company leaders, and industry thought leaders enables it to be the only event where the multiple and interconnected challenges facing the global energy sector can be properly and comprehensively addressed. Looking ahead to the final day, ADIPEC, taking place under the theme ‘Decarbonising, Faster, Together’, is facilitating dialogue, critical cross-sector partnerships and the game-changing solutions needed to advance decarbonisation and future-proof energy systems.