The industrial sector plays a major role in the Dutch (and global) energy system. Including the use of energy carriers as a primary source, around 40% of total energy usage can be attributed to industry.
Current and future challenges entail lowering the total energy demand and cutting CO2-emissions to zero by 2050. This means that the supply of energy has to become more sustainable. However, industry can also be seen as a demand side manager, capable of balancing energy production and use, providing the flexibility needed for a reliable and affordable energy system.
Making the industrial sector more sustainable will, according to contemporary roadmaps and research agendas, be attained through the following main pathways:
- A corporate transformation, incorporating sustainable operations in business models, workforce and supply chains.
- Minimizing energy demand per product (energy efficiency)
- Changing to renewable energy supply
- Greening of the industrial feedstock, including circularity and carbon capture and utilization
We emphasize that to reduce CO2 emissions dramatically, we need radical innovations. Therefore, industrial transformation will take place within a context of a systemic approach, linking processes of various industries (cluster and chain) in different sectors (such as production, agriculture, built environment and chemical industry).
Below you can see an overview of the several meetings that took place in order to complete the research agenda on the topic Industrial Transformation to stimulate and realise new research possibilities.