The future of energy is renewable, intelligent and decentralized

In 2020 the German-Irish Chamber of Industry and Commerce – AHK Ireland will celebrate its 40th anniversary. For the 40th Anniversary Book, which will be published at the end of August, GOLDBECK-SOLAR Managing Director and President of the German Solar Association (BSW)  Joachim Goldbeck described what the future of energy will look like and what role renewable energies will play in Ireland in particular.

Joachim Goldbeck, Geschäftsführer Goldbeck Solar

Photovoltaics as main driver

If we take a look at the future of energy, it will almost certainly have three characteristics that distinguish it from today’s energy production: Renewability, intelligence and decentralization. On the one hand, this means that every citizen can participate in the market, as well with intelligent consumption as in generation and even providing further grid services. Batteries and the application of hydrogen technologies can be integrated matching further supply and demand. On the other hand, every country will also become energetically independent from importing fossil resources for energy production. Fortunately, in many countries this picture is already partially a reality. The main driver here is photovoltaics, i.e. generating energy from the sun. Due to the rapid development of photovoltaics in recent years, this new and clean technology has now become an inexpensive source of electricity. It is therefore hardly surprising that the solar modules required for this are to be found both in small scale on house roofs and as large power plants, enjoying a wide public acceptance due to the low environmental impact.

Photovoltaics not only creates a sustainable and environmentally friendly way of generating energy, but also new and future-proof jobs. Jobs are created along the entire value chain, from project development, through planning, construction and operation, to the dismantling of the plant in 30 or 40 years. These services are largely provided by local forces.

The Future of Energy: Photovoltiac and Agriculture

Photovoltaics thus offers the best conditions for the sustainable development of a country in the three policies fields environment, energy and economy. The economic aspect develops enormous strength, especially if the individual segments of the market are developed in parallel. This means that, in addition to large-scale greenfield projects, medium-sized plants on commercial and industrial buildings and small plants on private houses are also built.

Agro-photovoltaicsor Agri-PVis yet another game variant where PV systems are built on arable land in such a way that an almost normal agricultural business can continue to operate underneath creating double utilization. Especially for a country like Ireland, this is an exciting alternative due to its conditions.

The foundations for the energy market in Ireland

However, for this healthy mix of different technologies and skills to develop in Ireland, an adequate legal framework needs to be in place enabling and facilitating the respective markets. When it is finally foreseeable that these favourable framework parameters will provide a stable market, both local and international companies will build up their structures in Ireland and thus establish a strong and knowledgeable industry. The German solar association BSW Solar is also happy to share its many years of experience with representatives of the public sector, associations, and private companies.

As president of the BSW Solar and managing director of GOLDBECK SOLAR, I know how important it is to have experienced partners in the development of a new and sustainable branch of industry. With the experience of 20 years, GOLDBECK SOLAR is one of the pioneers of photovoltaic development in this field. Through our solar projects all over the world, we have been able to contribute to a global expansion of PV efforts and thus establish sustainable energy technology in numerous countries. Because one thing is clear: the future of energy is above all green – and with photovoltaics we are taking a big step closer to this goal.

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