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18/10/2016

Sia Partners is well represented during the finals of the Energy Innovation Talks

The Top Sector Energy is looking for innovative ideas on energy and has challenged the next generation to develop these ideas during the Energy Innovation Talks. The goal is to give students and young professionals the chance to have their voice heard at the top of the energy sector at the Working Conference. Guy Rutten and Diederik Kuipers, two young consultants at Sia Partners, took this opportunity to share their vision on the future of the Energy transition.

Figure 1: Program Energy Innovation Talks

The Energy Innovation Talks started off with an introduction to the Top Sector Energy during a unique master class with Ed Nijpels (chairman SER assurance committee) and Peter Schmeitz (project Energy Dialogue). During inspiring presentations and interactive workshops with experts from the energy sector, participants learned all about the dilemmas and developed their vision. At the end of the day the 60 participants were invited to present their initial idea and the 32 best ideas were selected for the Boot Camp.

During the Boot Camp interdisciplinary teams of four were formed to highlight the dilemmas from all sides and develop an innovative idea together. Participants also received a personal leadership training and learned about lobbying techniques, public speaking and negotiation, to present their final ideas convincingly.

After being fully prepared by the Master Class and Boot Camp the eight teams had the opportunity to present their ideas to the jury, during one of the morning sessions of the Working Conference. The three best ideas were selected to be presented on the main stage during the closing of the Working Conference. The teams of Guy Rutten and Diederik Kuipers both made their way to the final three and got to make their appearance on the main stage.

To ensure that there is a follow-up on the ideas, all eight teams will have talks with the Topconsortia Knowledge and Innovation (TKI). The top three teams will meet the Topteam of the Top Sector Energy and the Committee on Ensuring the Energy Agreement (SER BEA), and the winners also get to share their idea with Minister Kamp of Economic Affairs.

The team of Sia Partners’ Guy Rutten was awarded the second place with an idea to integrate subsidies for specific innovations. Currently subsidy can be obtained to start a project for innovation at a certain maturity level. The subsidy can help carry it to the next level, but early maturity solutions need multiple rounds of these projects to reach market readiness. To solve this challenge a subsidy trajectory was proposed: an integrated subsidy that guarantees a follow up project once the current project proves successful in terms of technological gains and maintained potential for the stakeholder group. The stakeholder group will be a group within the industry interested in the same development. This can for example mean developing a new solution for storing energy. By sharing and nurturing innovation, the subsidy trajectory is capable of delivering much more innovation, than the current approach.

Figure 2: Financing trajectory for potentially impactfull innovation

The team of Sia Partners’ Diederik Kuipers won the Energy Innovation Talks with a simple idea to enhance demand side flexibility in electricity markets. As the share of renewable capacity grows, the marketplace will experience periods of oversupply when there is a lot of renewable production, and shortage when renewable production is at a minimum. Demand side response has long been considered to be a cost effective way of dealing with these shortage situations and reducing overall system costs. The team came to the conclusion that the fixed price contracts, currently used for medium and small users, did not provide sufficient incentive for behavior change needed to adjust the demand. For a contracting form to be successful it had to be effective, simple and attractive.

Figure 3: New contracting model

In the contracting form proposed by the team, the height of the monthly bill would not be determined by the sum of the consumption, but by the level of contracted coverage during shortage periods. The lower that level of coverage, and thus the share of flexibility required from the grid, the lower the monthly bill. Consumers are notified one day in advance of a pending shortage situation and the duration, and can shift the timing of their laundry or dishes accordingly. To ensure that consumers do not exceed their contracted level of coverage the smart meter is hard-wired in the transmission box.

At its core the idea is simple, however, achieving such a major transition is a challenge. The solution of the team is to apply a Collective Impact Approach to get actors aligned and in the same direction. This methodology defines five conditions for collective success, a common agenda, a shared measuring system, continuous communication, common strengthening activities, and a back-bone organization to organize that the first four conditions are met.

The teams are excited about their ideas and look forward to developing them further with the TKIs, the Top Sector Energy, the Committee on Ensuring the Energy Agreement, and the Minister. 

 

Copyright © 2016 Sia Partners. Any use of this material without specific permission of Sia Partners is strictly prohibited.

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