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Do you have an idea that could innovate the energy industry? Enter this contest

Date
15 November 2013
Do you have an idea that could innovate the energy industry? Enter this contest

LONDON: A competition designed to find innovative solutions to the world's energy challenge has been launched, with The Climate Group's CEO, Mark Kenber, on the judging panel.

The energy industry is an integral part of the solution to the twin challenges of securing energy supply and tackling climate change. To address this, energy companies are investing heavily in the research and development of innovative new technologies that will accelerate the shift from carbon intensive energy sources to renewables.

This competition, which is sponsored by Statoil and managed by The Economist Intelligence Unit, invites students, graduates, business executives and energy experts to share their ideas and help create awareness around these critical challenges.

Entires for the Energy Realities contest must focus on three core questions:

  1. Skills for innovation: To build on its past strengths and successfully adapt for the future, the energy sector will need to access a skilled pool of talent, such as well-trained engineers, technicians and scientists. But how do engineers, technicians and scientists stimulate innovation in the energy sector? And how can education systems and businesses develop a broader approach to their skills and make related professions more attractive?
  2. Diversifying our energy mix: The world faces two major energy challenges over the next 40 years. The first is to meet rapidly rising demand for energy and the second is to realize this goal while also achieving substantial reductions in carbon emissions. How can technology and innovation help meet these twin challenges? What are the most promising alternative sources of energy?
  3. Ensuring access to energy in developing countries: Affordable, reliable energy is critical to boosting prosperity, health and education. Yet more than 1.5 billion people in the developing world lack access to grid electricity. This has become even more acute because of the increased vulnerability brought about by climate change, the global financial crisis and volatile energy prices. This raises questions such as, what are the key policy changes and investments that are needed to secure access to energy in developing countries? What are some of the most innovative local approaches that could be rolled out elsewhere?

Entrants are invited to contribute their ideas and views on these issues in the form of a written essay, video or infographic by 5:00pm GMT on December 23, 2013. Entries will then be reviewed by a high-level panel of judges who specialise in each category, including Mark Kenber, CEO of The Climate GroupChristoph Frei, Secretary General of the World Energy CouncilJames Smith, Chairman of the Carbon Trust; and Jose Goldemberg, Brazil's former Secretary of State for Science and Technology. Format specifications can be found on the contest website.

The competition will end in a 90-minute live-streamed webinar on March 25, 2014, facilitated by The Economist Intelligence Unit, which will bring together four energy experts and the competition winner to debate how the challenges should be approached.

Watch the contest video, featuring Mark Kenber.

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