The new year has started with a lot of media attention for our common climate challenge. There was a Climate Summit in The Hague at which world leaders promised quicker adaptation to climate change, the Climate Adaptation Week in Groningen attended by several Nobel Prize winners with a great programme for the young, and a new president in the United States who immediately gave his support to the Paris Climate Agreement. In addition, there were reports about the relationship between the pandemic and climate change …. Clearly more and more people are becoming aware that we really have to get serious about achieving the climate targets, and are ready to commit themselves to the energy transition. Rightly so.
For New Energy Coalition, this fresh new year 2021 that lies ahead means the kick-off of a new phase. Our new strategy for the next four-year period has taken off. This means we will further calibrate our targets, with an increased focus on ‘human capital’. This does not necessarily mean that our daily work will change very much, but we will bring research and innovation closer together and we will broaden our attention to the labour market and education. This will become visible on our website in the coming months.
The energy transition, on which we are all working so hard, is still quite abstract for many people. “What do you people do exactly and what does it mean for my life?” is a question that many lay persons ask. That’s understandable. A lot of the work we and our partners do takes place behind the scenes: research, projects, pilots, policy. Apart from a few hydrogen buses appearing in our region in the public transport sector, and the laborious processes around the development of solar and wind farms, the road to a new energy future is difficult to visualize for the general public. How do you show fundamental research and the impacts it has? Our partner, the University of Groningen, made a successful attempt to do so – you can read more about it in this newsletter.
I hope that we will be able to meet each other in person again this year. I am sure you feel the same. Meanwhile we will keep carrying on. This will no doubt lead to more news. But that’s for the next issue of this newsletter.