Black & Veatch, Canary Media Report: 2022 Global Decarbonization Push Complex, Although the Promise of Clean Energy Remains | Black & Veatch

Black & Veatch, Canary Media Report: 2022 Global Decarbonization Push Complex, Although the Promise of Clean Energy Remains

Survey-driven ‘Energy Transition Snapshot 2022’ examines current volatility, progress in evolving energy ecosystem amid release of the Inflation Reduction Act

As global decarbonization accelerates through widening adoption of renewable energy and other green technologies, a new survey-driven report by Black & Veatch and Canary Media highlights the pace and progress of clean energy despite this year’s unusual volatility in the power sector.

The “Energy Transition Snapshot 2022” report, released today and based on a survey of nearly 200 climate and cleantech professionals, offers deep introspection about the state of clean energy against the backdrop of such recent headwinds as supply chain issues, global inflation, the war in Ukraine and pricing volatility. 

As the report makes clear, debates remain unsettled about topics ranging from the growth rates of long-duration energy storage to electric vehicle (EV) adoption and the likelihood that the U.S. can meet its most ambitious targets for emissions reductions. The report also assesses survey participants’ perspectives about the state of specific technologies, including solar, storage, EVs and hydrogen.

Despite the recent challenges, promising signs continue to emerge, most notable along the funding front. While the survey concluded before eventual August passage of the “Inflation Reduction Act,” that new law will direct $369 billion over the next decade toward clean energy, EVs, pollution reduction and energy security. It’s the largest single federal investment to fight climate change, stoking optimism on the heels of the billions of dollars already committed to the industry by the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.

“While any year can bring unique challenges to ambitious campaigns such as decarbonization, as was the case so far in 2022, we remain bullish on the long-term promise of clean energy,” said Mario Azar, Black & Veatch’s Chairman and CEO. “Backed by the infusion of new federal spending commitments, renewable energy – including the ascension of hydrogen – continues to define tomorrow’s reimagined energy ecosystem.” 

Key findings of the report include:

  • Just 31 percent of respondents believe the United states will hit the Biden administration’s goal of decarbonizing the nation’s power grid by 2035. Forty-one percent say it won’t happen, with an additional 28 percent believing it’ll be close but not reachable.
  • More than one-quarter of respondents say their organizations set ambitious greenhouse gas reduction and energy goals but don’t yet know how to reach them. Thirty-one percent are pursuing somewhat aggressive goals in the belief that technology advances and cost reductions will get them there.
  • Survey respondents cited transmission congestion and local opposition as the top two barriers to U.S. renewable growth.
  • The largest number of respondents said hydrogen’s “true calling” is as a power source for hard-to-decarbonize industries such as cement or steel manufacturing. Long-duration energy storage came in second, followed by heavy-duty vehicle fuel and aviation fuel.
  • In the Black & Veatch survey of clean energy professionals — a group that could be presumed to be early adopters — only 17 percent of respondents said they own an electric vehicle. Their primary hurdles: charging options and the cost of EVs.

Editor’s Notes:

  • To download a copy of the “Energy Transition Snapshot 2022” report, click here.

About Black & Veatch

Black & Veatch is a 100-percent employee-owned global engineering, procurement, consulting and construction company with a more than 100-year track record of innovation in sustainable infrastructure. Since 1915, we have helped our clients improve the lives of people around the world by addressing the resilience and reliability of our most important infrastructure assets. Our revenues in 2021 exceeded US$3.3 billion. Follow us on and on social media.

About Canary Media

Canary Media is an independent, nonprofit journalism outlet powered by RMI and dedicated to chronicling the transition to a decarbonized economy and society, with a particular focus on the transformation of the energy, transportation, industrial and building sectors. Canary Media’s overarching goal is to provide the most relevant information and expert analysis on climatech and clean energy for an audience of concerned citizens, as well as the policymakers, investors and industry participants under pressure to plan and executive far-reaching changes required to achieve rapid decarbonization. For more information about Canary Media, click here.

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