Climate Change

Wired for Success: Electrifying Europe’s Climate Race

Wired for Success Electrifying Europe's Climate Race

Photo: EUSEW

Published

April 2, 2024

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Published:

April 2, 2024

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Author: Malte Lohan, Director General | Orgalim, Europe’s Technology Industries, EUSEW’s partner organisation

In the grand race to combat climate change, Europe stands tall, aspiring to lead the way towards a greener future. However, this ambition comes with a pressing question: How can Europe maintain its businesses’ competitive edge on the global stage while championing environmental sustainability?

The answer lies in a powerful combination: advanced manufacturing and electrification. Advanced manufacturing harnesses innovative technologies such as automation, robotics, and digitally connected solutions to enhance products and processes, catapulting industries into the future.

On the other hand, electrification ties together multiple strands that are important to our industries, including the decarbonization of the energy system and the switch to renewables; a focus on energy and resource efficiency; the shift to smarter grids, smarter buildings and smarter transport; sector coupling; and new – “advanced” – manufacturing processes.

This dynamic duo isn’t just about reducing emissions; it’s about revolutionizing how industries operate. By embracing advanced manufacturing techniques, businesses can streamline production processes, use less critical resources, reducing energy consumption and waste along the way. Meanwhile, electrification can ensure that the energy used comes from carbon-neutral sources and unlock new efficiencies, further cutting down on harmful emissions.

What’s more, Europe’s technology industries are at the forefront of this revolution. They’re not only world leaders in advanced manufacturing and electrification technologies but also pioneers in shaping the future of sustainable industry.

Well-crafted policy framework is indispensable

To maintain this competitive advantage while we lead the journey towards climate neutrality, a well-crafted policy framework is indispensable. While some may argue that Europe has overreached in this endeavor, suggesting that the costs are too high, I firmly believe that the net zero goal remains valid and essential.

However, it is time to adjust the instruments to get there. The next five years will be pivotal in this regard. Hence, we advocate for a fresh political agenda meticulously designed to establish the optimal conditions for unleashing the full power of Europe’s high-tech manufacturing potential.

This includes policies that incentivize innovation, support clean energy infrastructure, and foster collaboration between industries and governments. As the driving force behind the technologies indispensable for achieving net-zero emissions, we have developed an agenda aimed at strengthening Europe’s high-tech manufacturing base.

Europe’s ambition to lead the net-zero transformation needs to be squared with the pressing need to safeguard its competitiveness and secure its economic resilience. It won’t falter due to competitors’ policies. But it may falter if the right policy conditions are lacking at home.

As Europe charts its course towards a greener future, it’s clear that industrial innovation and electrification hold the keys to success. By embracing these technologies and creating an enabling environment for businesses to thrive, Europe can demonstrate that the fight against climate change can go hand in hand with a thriving economy. Together, let’s make it happen.

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