Energy Transition Podcast

Energy Transition Podcast

Energy Transition Podcast intro

Welcome to our podcast about transitioning to renewable energy sources!

Are you looking to make a positive impact on the environment and reduce your carbon footprint? Do you want to learn more about renewable energy technologies and how they can be implemented in your life? Our podcast explores the latest developments in the world of renewable energy and provides practical tips and advice for making the switch.

Join us on our journey as we explore the benefits of renewable energy and the steps we can take to create a more sustainable future.

Energy Transition Podcast latest episode

Latest podcast episode:

#63 Unlocking the Potential of Floating Wind Farms (with Synn Nybø, SINTEF Ocean)

Episode 63, 21 February

#63 Unlocking the Potential of Floating Wind Farms (with Synn Nybø, SINTEF Ocean)

In this episode, we dive into the fascinating world of floating wind technology with guest Synne Nybø from SINTEF Ocean. She shares her journey from obtaining a master's degree in marine technology from NTNU in 2017 to her transition from consultancy to PhD researcher.

Synne discusses the technical and environmental aspects of offshore wind energy, highlighting the advantages of floating wind turbines, such as their ability to harness stronger offshore winds and their minimal impact on seabed and marine life. She explains various mooring systems and the importance of designing efficient and resilient structures to withstand harsh ocean conditions.

The episode also covers the potential of shared mooring systems to reduce costs and environmental footprint, the role of offshore wind in the energy transition, and the ongoing developments in marine technology research. Synne's insights provide a deep dive into the innovative solutions being explored to harness the power of the ocean for renewable energy


Energy Transition Podcast host Julius Wesche

Energy Transition host, Julius Wesche
Dr. Julius Wesche leads the NTNU Energy Transition Podcast.

About the Energy Transition Podcast

#61 Harvesting Sunlight: Exploring Agro Photovoltaics (with Marta Victoria, Aarhus University)

Episode 61, 7 December

#61 Harvesting Sunlight: Exploring Agro Photovoltaics (with Marta Victoria, Aarhus University)

In this episode, we discuss the emerging field of agrophotovoltaics (agri-PV) with ⁠Marta Victoria⁠, an associate professor specializing in solar photovoltaics and energy systems modeling at the University of Aarhus in Denmark.

We learn about the basic concept of agro-PV, combining agriculture and solar panels on farmland, and discuss its benefits, geographical viability, challenges, and the use of different crops. Marta explains various installation methods—horizontal and vertical setups—and addresses concerns regarding material consumption, reduced solar panel yield due to crop shadows, and potential collaborations with irrigation systems to optimize water usage.

The ongoing ⁠HyPErFarm Project⁠ aims to create real installations in Germany, Belgium, and Denmark to study and implement agro-PV systems, focusing on crop-solar panel interactions, irrigation integration, and overall efficiency.


#58 What does Electrifying the Melkøya LNG plant tell us about Norwegian CCS? (with Eivind Berstad, Bellona)

Episode 58, 26 October

#58 What does Electrifying the Melkøya LNG plant tell us about Norwegian CCS? (with Eivind Berstad, Bellona)

In today’s episode: The complex decision-making process behind the energy infrastructure at Norway's Melkøya LNG plant. The plant, located in the Snøhvit field in the northernmost region of Norway, lacks a pipeline to transport gas to Europe. Therefore, the gas must be liquefied, a highly energy-intensive process. There have been plans to decarbonize the liquefaction process through carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology. However, recently the government has shifted towards electrification, raising questions about the feasibility and cost-effectiveness of CCS.

Our guest this week is ⁠Eivind Berstad⁠, a chemical engineer and team leader for CCS in the environmental NGO ⁠Bellona⁠ - an organization working towards finding climate solutions, emphasizing the importance of industry cooperation and research funding.

Together, we delve into the Melkøya plant's history, operational challenges, the reasons behind considering electrification over carbon capture, and the lack of transparency in the decision-making process. We consider factors like rising emission costs and the future outlook of carbon reduction initiatives. The episode highlights the urgency in finding economically viable solutions to curb emissions and achieve climate goals, underscoring the intricate balance between environmental responsibility and economic viability.


#55 Recent Energy Transition News (with Dr. Julius Wesche)

Episode 55, 15 September

#55 Recent Energy Transition News (with Dr. Julius Wesche)

 

Welcome to Episode 55 of the New Energy Transition Podcast. In this episode, I cover three recent news related to energy transition. First, I discuss the electrification of Melkøya, an energy island off the coast of Hammerfest in Norway. Next, about Germany's decision to phase out fossil heating systems, which contribute significantly to the nation's CO2 emissions. And finally, an update on electric vehicle registrations in Norway, where more than 83% of new passenger cars registered in August 2023 were electric.

This episode was a bit make-shift, as the planned guest had to cancel. But stay tuned for upcoming episodes: Next we're interviewing Carl Christian Strømberg, Founder/CEO of Solcellespesialisten, Norway's largest solar installer. Plus, don't miss the ⁠live episode recording on September 22nd⁠ and a ⁠Green Energy Shifters⁠ networking event on September 28th in Oslo as part of Oslo Innovation Week.


#53 How to accelerate Norwegian Climate and Impact Startups (with Jørn Haanæes, Katapult)

Episode 53, 20 June

#53 How to accelerate Norwegian Climate and Impact Startups (with Jørn Haanæes, Katapult)

Jørn Haanæs is the investment director at Katapult, a climate venture capital fund. We discuss the challenges and rewards of being involved in startups, emphasizing the need for passion, excellence, resilience, and the importance of pursuing meaningful problems and maintaining motivation in the face of challenges.

Haanæs explains the role of venture capital firms in providing risk capital to startups and highlights the importance of finding outliers that can generate significant returns. We look closer at the concept of accelerators and how Katapult combines venture capital investment with an accelerator program to support early-stage startups.


#50 Steering Capital towards Low-Carbon tech (with Anne Margrethe M. Platou, DNB Markets)

Episode 50, 8 June

#50 Steering Capital towards Low-Carbon tech (with Anne Margrethe M. Platou, DNB Markets)

Anne Margrethe M. Platou⁠, an ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) analyst at DNB, one of the largest banks in the Nordic region, joins our 50th episode to talk about steering capital flows toward low-carbon projects. She explains the importance of finance and capital flows in driving the energy transition and highlights the role of banks in channeling capital toward new solutions that shape the future. We look at three key components: commercial banking, asset management, and investment banking, and highlight how they work together to realize the bank's sustainability strategy. The current state of the financing system is discussed, and we explore strategies, challenges, and opportunities in aligning it with the energy transition, emphasizing the role of banks, investors, and pension funds.

 


#47 BECCS - Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (with Fabian Levihn, Stockholm Exergi)

Episode 47, 27 April

#47 BECCS - Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (with Fabian Levihn, Stockholm Exergi)

In this episode of the NTNU Energy Transition Podcast, we discuss "BECCS", or Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage. We explore the use of biomass for heating and capturing CO2 to be stored underground, and how it fits into pathways for reaching net zero emissions. I am joined by Fabian Levihn, the head of R&D at ⁠Stockholm Exergi⁠ and a member of the carbon removals expert group for the European Commission. Levihn explains how BECCS technology works and its potential as a negative emissions solution. We also discuss policy frameworks and market models needed to make BECCS and other negative emissions technologies economically feasible.

 


#44 How Green is Blue Hydrogen? (with Prof. Robert W. Howarth, Cornell University)

Episode 44, 16 March

#44 How Green is Blue Hydrogen? (with Prof. Robert W. Howarth, Cornell University)

Robert Warren Howarth⁠ is a professor and earth system scientist at Cornell University (USA), and is also member of the⁠ Climate Action Council⁠ appointed by the State of New York. In 2021, Howarth and Stanford Professor Mark Z. Jacobson, stirred up controversy with their paper, "⁠How Green is Blue Hydrogen?⁠"

Their study found that the production of blue hydrogen results in significant greenhouse gas emissions, both carbon dioxide and unburned fugitive methane, which is a major contributor to climate change. Even with carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology, the emissions associated with blue hydrogen are still substantial, argue Howarth and Jacobson.

The peer-reviewed paper sparked a lot of reactions. Among others, researchers here at NTNU later published a ⁠Comment on “How green is blue hydrogen?”⁠, questioning Howarth and Jacobson's methods for computing the energy balance of blue hydrogen plants, and saying the assumed methane leakage in the United States cannot represent all natural gas and blue hydrogen value chains globally.

Has the dust now settled? We sat down and had a chat with Professor Robert W. Howarth, to find out.

 


#41 Buying Carbon Removal, Explained (with Mitchel Selby, Shopify)

Episode 41, 2 February

#41 Buying Carbon Removal, Explained (with Mitchel Selby, Shopify)

Mitchel Selby works on Shopify's Sustainability Fund, which supports the most promising solutions to fighting climate change. Right now, they're focused on kickstarting carbon removal and decarbonizing shipping.

Despite increasing awareness and calls for action, many companies are still wary of making investments in carbon removal. But fear not, Mitchel Selby and Shopify have put together a comprehensive guide to make the process a lot less daunting. In "Buying Carbon Removal, Explained" they lay out nine lessons that cover everything from building a strong business case to finalizing a contract with your supplier. So in this episode, we demystify purchasing carbon removal and learn how to make a positive impact on the environment.


#37 The Future of Electric Batteries (with Prof. Ann Mari Svensson)

Episode 37, 8 December

#37 The Future of Electric Batteries (with Prof. Ann Mari Svensson)

Ann Mari Svensson is a Professor at NTNU's Materials Science and Engineering department. She specializes in electrochemical processes for energy storage and electrolysis, which is important for developing new battery technologies.

The future is electric, and batteries will play a big role in it. Renewables, like wind and solar, don't consistently deliver energy when we need it the most. Batteries can alleviate this, by providing storage and lending flexibility to the grid system. Ever thought about the fact that more and more people own electric cars, which are basically big batteries, hooked up to the system when charging? In theory, there are several amazing possibilities on the horizon. What are the current hurdles we need to overcome, and what is today's status?


#26 European Energy Policy in the Making (with Connie Hedegaard, former European Commissioner for Climate Action)

Episode 26, July 7

#26 European Energy Policy in the Making (with Connie Hedegaard, former European Commissioner for Climate Action)

Connie Hedegaard was the EU Commissioner for Climate Action between 2010 and 2014 and continues to be a strong climate action advocate. Since she left office, she continued to work with a number of non-profit organizations, and is also active on corporate boards of companies such as Danfoss, Volkswagen, and Nordex. In this episode you will learn how policy is made in the EU, and while we talk mostly about the formal ways we will also touch upon the informal ways, and what happens behind the scene. Additionally, you will learn how Connie experienced the rather unsatisfactory COP 2009 in Copenhagen, what lessons she learned from that for policy making at large and we also talked briefly about current major EU policy initiatives such as Fitfor55 and RePowerEU.


#25 Financing the Energy Transition (with Harry Boyd-Carpenter & Nigel Jollands, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development)

Episode 25, June 23

#25 Financing the Energy Transition (with Harry Boyd-Carpenter & Nigel Jollands, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development)

The International Energy Agency estimates total annual energy investment to surge to USD 5 trillion by 2030. Why is money so important in the energy transition and how can countries move to sustainable, market-oriented economies?

This is what you will learn when listening to this episode of the NTNU Energy Transition Podcast with Harry Boyd-Carpenter (Managing Director, Climate Strategy and Delivery) and Nigel Jollands (Associate Director, Head for Sustainable Infrastructure, Climate Strategy and delivery) both at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

 


#23 How expectations shape the Energy Transition (with Prof. Harro van Lente)

Episode 23, May 26

#23 How expectations shape the Energy Transition (with Prof. Harro van Lente)

Expectations are one of these fluffy social science topics, but when you look closer you actually realize how important they are in innovation and sustainability transition processes. The energy transition is fundamentally influenced by expectations that we have towards specific solutions and modes of operations. We set up financial incentives, change policies, and invest into research, because we expect that wind power, solar PV or hydrogen can blaze the trail towards a low carbon economy. If we would not have these expectations, we would not move a thumb. Expectations are also important in the start up world. Start ups normally don't have products, but only ideas, and they get funding and press coverage not because on the results of their actions, but on the expectations that they will build the next big thing.

Hence, today we look at expectations. For this episode I invited Prof. Harro van Lente from University of Maastricht who is known as one of, if not the father of the sociology of expectations. First we define what expectations are and how the differ from visions, imaginaries and representations. Then we discuss how expectations shape socio-technical transitions as a whole and energy transitions in particular. And in the end we talk about how you as member of an organization, a start up or as policy makers can actually make use of the expectations related knowledge that you will have gotten when you listen to this podcast.

Enjoy the show :-). 

- van Lente (2012), Navigating foresight in a sea of expectations: lessons from the sociology of expectations

- Borup, Brown, Konrad, van Lente (2006), The sociology of expectations in science and technology

 


#21 Policies to support the deployment of renewable electricity technologies (with Dr. Pablo del Rio)

Episode 21, Apr 28

#21 Policies to support the deployment of renewable electricity technologies (with Dr. Pablo del Rio)

How can governments support renewable electricity technologies? What's being done, and what does the future look like? And why were these policies needed initially, to give such technologies traction? What's needed, if we are to reach Europe's ambitious goals for transitioning to renewable energy?

Today's guest is Dr. Pablo del Rio. He is the head of the Environmental Economics Group (GEA) at the Institute for Public Goods and Policies at the National Research Council of Spain (CSIC) and has spent more than 20 years looking particularly at the policies for renewable energy.


#18 Energy Transition in the Global South (with Jose Antonio Ordonez from Fraunhofer ISI)

Episode 18, Apr 7

#18 Energy Transition in the Global South (with Jose Antonio Ordonez from Fraunhofer ISI)

The global south, with countries such as Indonesia and India, relies heavily on coal and other fossil fuels. Many of these countries have not embarked on real decarbonization pathways. In this episode, we take a closer look at the barriers these countries face to supply the growing energy demand and do this in a sustainable way.

Today's guest, Jose Antonio Ordonez, is a researcher in the Fraunhofer ISI's Competence Center Energy Policy and Energy Markets where he works in the business unit Global Sustainable Energy Transitions. Over the last years he has conducted a large number of energy transition and decarbonization projects across a variety of countries in the global south and emerging economies dealing with supporting the integration of renewable energy, energy efficiency and climate protection policies.


#17 Direct Air Capture and other CDR technologies (with Dr. Jay Fuhrmann)

Episode 17, Mar 31

#17 Direct Air Capture and other CDR technologies (with Dr. Jay Fuhrmann)

The CO2 is all around us, can't we just collect and store it safely? Today's guest is Jay Fuhrman. He is a postdoctoral researcher at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory’s Joint Global Change Research Institute. He received his PhD in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the University of Virginia in 2021. Jay’s research uses integrated assessment models to understand the transitions required for deep climate mitigation, including the large-scale deployment of carbon dioxide removal technologies, their potential side-effects, and co-benefits.


#16 The Decarbonization of Steel & Refineries (with Dr. Frauke Urban)

Episode 16, Mar 24

#16 The Decarbonization of Steel & Refineries (with Dr. Frauke Urban)

Some of the biggest emitters also face the biggest challenges in the energy transition. I today's episode, we take a closer look at the potential solutions, with focus on the steel and refinery industries. Our guest today is Dr. Frauke Urban. She is an Associate Professor and Docent in the Management of Sustainable Energy Systems at the Department for Industrial Economics and Management at KTH Royal Institute of Technology, and specializes in technology and business perspectives as part of the Research Initiative on Sustainable Industry and Society (IRIS).


#10 Electrifying everything? - Decarbonizing Transport in Europe (with Dr. Patrick Plötz)

Episode 10, Feb 10

#10 Electrifying everything? - Decarbonizing Transport in Europe (with Dr. Patrick Plötz)

Transport represents almost a quarter of Europe's greenhouse gas emissions and is the main course of air pollution in cities. The transport sector has not seen the same gradual decline in emissions, as other sectors. Emissions just started decreasing in 2007 and still remain higher than in 1990. Hence, let's have a look at this sector to actually understand it a bit better and its current state.

For this episode, we're joined by the Coordinator of Business Unit Energy Economy at Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research ISI, Priv.-Doz. Dr. Patrick Plötz. He has studied Physics in Greifswald, St. Petersburg and Göttingen and did his thesis in Theoretical Physics on correlated electrons in one-dimensional systems. He holds a Doctorate degree in Theoretical Physics from the University of Heidelberg (Institute for Theoretical Physics) on complex dynamics in cold atomic gases. Fom January to December 2011 he was a researcher in the Competence Center Energy Policy and Energy Systems at the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research ISI, and since January 2012 in the Competence Center Energy Technology and Energy Systems. Since 2020 he's been the Coordinator of Business Unit Energy Economy, and a private lecturer at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT).


#11 Rage Against the Taxonomy - Why and how the EU declares Nuclear and Natural gas as green technologies (with Kira Taylor from Euractive)

Episode 11, feb 17

#11 Rage Against the Taxonomy - Why and how the EU declares Nuclear and Natural gas as green technologies (with Kira Taylor from Euractive)

EU just unveiled that it plans to label investments in natural gas and nuclear projects as sustainable if certain criteria are met, a controversial move that raises concerns about greenwashing and divides member states. If a majority backs it, it will become EU law, coming into effect from 2023. The taxonomy - a labeling system that incentives investing in green solutions - is a part of the strategy to make the 2050 net-zero goal.

Kira Taylor (@KiraTaylor15), an energy and environment journalist for Euractive stationed in Brussels, is our guest in this episode. We talk about the taxonomy's effect and people's reactions. How does this labeling system work? What are the advantages of a taxonomy like this?

If you find this interesting, please consider registering for the workshop: "The Future of Nuclear Energy" at the upcoming NTNU Energy Transition Week 2022.

Sources referred to in this episode:

  1. The first climate delegated act

  2. Remarks by Commissioner McGuinness at the press conference on the EU Taxonomy Complementary Climate Delegated Act

  3. Kira's article: The Green Brief: An EU taxonomy fairytale


The Norwegian Energy Transition (with Prof. Asgeir Tomasgard)

Episode 4, Dec 30

The Norwegian Energy Transition (with Prof. Asgeir Tomasgard)

Norway is Unique: It has abundant natural energy resources and a relatively small population. It’s electricity runs mainly on carbon free hydro energy, and it is one of the wealthiest countries on the planet. But most of its wealth comes from exporting fossil fuels such as natural gas and oil. While the Norwegian government aims to accelerate the low carbon energy transition, social resistance rises against new wind farms in order to preserve nature and the cultural heritage of the country.

To give an overview over these tricky topics I met with Asgeir Tomasgard. Asgeir is Professor at NTNU in the department of Industrial Economics and Technology Management. He is the director of the NTNU Energy Transition Initiative, and hence he is the one that gave my producer Martin and me the slack to start this podcast.


#07 The German Energy Transition (with Dr. Eva Schmidt)

Episode 7, Jan 20

#07 The German Energy Transition (with Dr. Eva Schmidt)

The German energy transition, commonly known as the 'Energiwende', is challenging many parts of German society. Until March 2011, one-quarter of Germany's electricity was obtained from nuclear energy, which is now due to be phased out in 2022. Coal-fired power generation is expected to diminish, as wind and solar receive generous financial support.

Whether Germany's efforts have been a success or a failure has been a popular debate in recent years. Luckily for us, we found the perfect person to ask for a status update. Dr. Eva Schmidt, Team Leader German and European Energy Policy in Germanwatch: a non-profit, non-governmental organization that actively engages in international political and economic discussions, met with Julius for a chat in Berlin.


#60 Solar PV: Technologies, Materials, and Testing (with Ewan Dunlop, Joint Research Centre)

Episode 60, 23 November

#60 Solar PV: Technologies, Materials, and Testing (with Ewan Dunlop, Joint Research Centre)

Ewan Dunlop leads the European Solar Test installation at the Joint Research Centre (JRC). As we will cover in the episode, JRC's work is significant in the standardization and calibration of solar PV technologies, which ensures accurate measurements, reliability, and trustworthy information for consumers.

In this episode, Dunlops explains the history of solar PV testing, emphasizing its evolution from early applications in the 70s to current silicon-based module dominance. He highlights the crucial role of standardized testing methods in guaranteeing product quality and market confidence.


#57 Solar in Norway, and how to ramp it up to 8 TWh by 2030 (with Carl Christian Strømberg, CEO of Solcellespesialisten)

Episode 57, 12 October

#57 Solar in Norway, and how to ramp it up to 8 TWh by 2030 (with Carl Christian Strømberg, CEO of Solcellespesialisten)

Carl Christian Strømberg⁠, is founder and CEO of ⁠Solcellespesialisten⁠, Norway's largest solar PV installer. Carl shares his journey from graduating with an electronics degree from NTNU in 2005 to becoming the CEO of a leading solar company in Norway. He talks openly about the challenges of starting a solar business in a market where solar installations were virtually nonexistent, and his plans for the future.

Over the years, Solcellespesialisten has snowballed, doubling its workforce and expanding its operations several times. Carl explains how the company focuses on quality and close relationships with customers to achieve this growth. When listening to this episode you will also learn about the status quo of the Norwegian solar energy ecosystem and how Carl and Solcellerspecialisten aim to shape it in the future as the energy transition progresses.


#54 Hydrogen Safety - Rather Safe than Sorry (with Nicola Paltrinieri, NTNU Team Hydrogen)

Episode 54, 31 August

#54 Hydrogen Safety - Rather Safe than Sorry (with Nicola Paltrinieri, NTNU Team Hydrogen)

Nicola Paltrinieri⁠ is a Professor of Risk Assessment at the NTNU Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, and leads the ⁠NTNU Team Hydrogen⁠. He joins us to discuss the complexities of hydrogen safety and its role in the energy transition.

The conversation starts off by bringing up an earlier podcast episode. In episode 44, Professor Robert Warren Howarth, co-author of the controversial paper "⁠How Green is Blue Hydrogen?⁠" was a guest. Professor Paltrinieri was part of a ⁠comment⁠ team that aimed to provide a more balanced view of that paper, and helps us understand the nuances of the debate surrounding the paper, emphasizing the importance of data accuracy, context, and diversification in investment.

Following the blue hydrogen discussion, the conversation shifts to hydrogen safety. Professor Paltrinieri explores the complexity of hydrogen safety, emphasizing that it involves multiple factors beyond just combustion and explosion risks. He addresses the challenges of working with an emerging technology where operational experience is limited, leading to uncertainties in statistical analysis. Additionally, he discusses the interaction between human factors and technology, and the need for effective inspection and maintenance strategies.


#Bonus: Nuclear Energy and its Potential in Norway (with Prof. Erik Wahlström)

Bonus episode, 3 Aug

#Bonus: Nuclear Energy and its Potential in Norway (with Prof. Erik Wahlström)

Due to the holiday break, we've asked youth from ⁠Young Energy⁠ and ⁠Young Climate⁠ to create two bonus episodes for us. Having the freedom to choose both guests and topics themselves, their first episode delves into a somewhat controversial topic: Nuclear energy, and its potential in Norway.

Today's host, Daniel Øystrøm, starts by discussing the historical context of nuclear energy in Norway. The episode features two other students from UngEnergi and UngKlima, and Professor ⁠Erik Wahlström⁠, the leader of the newly established ⁠NTNU Team Nuclear⁠, whose primary goal is to gather information and resources related to nuclear energy to determine the best strategies for the university's involvement in the field.

Their discussion touch upon public and political opinion on nuclear energy in Norway, the complexity of the current nuclear energy debate, the credible arguments on both sides, and the potential risks and costs associated with nuclear power. The need for a more nuanced public debate is emphasized.

Ultimately, the episode explores whether Norway should actively participate in nuclear energy development or wait to observe progress in other countries before making decisions. It raises questions about the viability and safety of different nuclear technologies, such as thorium-filled reactors, and the importance of cost-effectiveness in determining the future of nuclear energy in Norway.


#51 CCS in Norway - a failed moon landing, or a marathon run? (with Emil Yde Aasen, Aker Carbon Capture)

Episode 51, 22 June

#51 CCS in Norway - a failed moon landing, or a marathon run? (with Emil Yde Aasen, Aker Carbon Capture)

Emil Yde Aasen⁠, a Market Strategy & Insight Manager at Aker Carbon Capture, shares his insights on the challenges and developments in the CCS market. Together, we discuss the importance of CCS in achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement and enabling decarbonization in hard-to-abate industries.

Emil also highlights the two operational CCS projects in Norway and the ongoing efforts to capture and store CO2 emissions from industrial processes. The episode provides an overview of CCS, its significance in combating climate change, and the emerging field of carbon capture and utilization. We shed light on the progress made in CCS technology and the need for further commercial projects to scale up its implementation. Join the conversation to learn more about the current state and future prospects of CCS in Norway and beyond.

 


#48 The Future of the Scandinavian Power Grid (with Prof. Lina Bertling Tjernberg)

Episode 48, 11 May

#48 The Future of the Scandinavian Power Grid (with Prof. Lina Bertling Tjernberg)

Lina Bertling Tjernberg⁠ is a Professor in Power Grid Technology at KTH – The Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden. In this episode, she helps us understand how the power grid work. We start by discussing the importance of reliability in power grids and how it relates to asset management. Then we delve into the structure of the Swedish power system and the challenges it faces due to the country's geography and the distribution of population centers. We also touch on the current developments in the Scandinavian power grids and how challenges such as integrating renewable energy sources can be alleviated in the long run.

Check out Lina's book on ⁠Infrastructure Asset Management with Power System Applications⁠.

 


#45 The Future of Petroleum Exploration and Renewables in Norway (with State Secretary Andreas Bjelland Eriksen)

Episode 45, 30 March

#45 The Future of Petroleum Exploration and Renewables in Norway (with State Secretary Andreas Bjelland Eriksen)

How do the plans for further oil exploration of the Norwegian government fit with recent reports of the IPCC that we are on a path well above the Paris goals of 2° centigrade? Why is drilling in the Arctic pushed by the Norwegian government, despite not only environmental concerns but also substantially higher predicted extraction costs? And why are strongly needed renewables so highly taxed in Norway? These questions and more asked Julius to Andreas Bjelland Eriksen who is the state secretary in the Norwegian Ministry for Petroleum and Energy during Andreas' visit to Trondheim last week for the NTNU Energy Transition Week. If you want to know the answers, check out the episode.


#42 German Norwegian Hydrogen and CO2 Cooperation (with Odd Even Jakobsen)

Episode 42, 16 February

#42 German Norwegian Hydrogen and CO2 Cooperation (with Odd Even Jakobsen)

Germany has two needs: First, hydrogen at scale to to decarbonize its heavy industry. Second, access to storage for its CO2. Norway can offer both. Therefore, Germany and Norway are currently exploring what pipelines to build, where wind farms can be built and CO2 storage can be accessed. 

Odd Even Jacobson is a Project Manager at Gassco and looks at the feasibility of these mammoths tasks. Together with its German counterpart Gassco they are currently studying to see how a hydrogen and CO2 value chain could look like that would bring the two countries closer together. In this episode, Odd Even and Julius discussed the current gas infrastructure and how gas is transported from the Norwegian Continental Shelf to Europe. They also discuss how hydrogen could be used in the future for industrial applications, and the challenges that both countries might face in implementing a hydrogen and CO2 value chain.


#39 Policy measures to support Direct Air Capture (with Sasha Mackler from the Bipartisan Policy Centre in Washington D.C.)

Episode 39, 5 January

#39 Policy measures to support Direct Air Capture (with Sasha Mackler from the Bipartisan Policy Centre in Washington D.C.)

Sasha Mackler is the director of the Energy Program at the Bipartisan Policy Center - a Washington, DC-based think tank. He has spent over 20 years in this field, including 10 years in the private sector working on carbon capture and biomass fuel supply. Mackler has managed a number of energy policy projects on topics such as tax incentives, federal RD&D, finance, workforce transition, carbon capture and storage, low carbon fuels, cap and trade, climate impacts and adaptation, and geoengineering research.

Policies play a crucial role in defining the environment in which technologies, such as direct air capture (DAC), can thrive or struggle. Several policy measures have been implemented in the United States in recent years to support DAC. One such policy is 45Q, a section of the US Internal Revenue Code that supports carbon capture and was enacted in 2008. The Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) is another policy measure, initially implemented in California in 2007, which aims to drive the use of clean fuels and includes DAC as a qualifying pathway for decarbonizing fuels. The Energy Act of 2020 authorized new programs for the US Department of Energy to support the demonstration and commercialization of advanced energy technologies, including DAC. Recently, The Inflation Reduction Act, adopted in August 2022, provides incentives for carbon capture, utilization, and storage projects.


#38 Direct Air Capture - A silver bullet to reverse climate change? (With Prof. Christopher Jones, Georgia Tech)

Episode 38, 22 December

#38 Direct Air Capture - A silver bullet to reverse climate change? (With Prof. Christopher Jones, Georgia Tech)

Christopher Jones is a Professor at Georgia University of Technology and has been working on direct air capture (DAC) technology since 2008.

Direct air capture is a process that removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere in order to reduce the negative impacts of climate change. In this podcast episode, Jones discusses the importance of this technology in reversing the paradigm of emitting carbon dioxide into the atmosphere for the past 100 years and how it can be used as a waste management solution to clean up the excess CO2 we have released. He also touches on the shift in discourse surrounding DAC, the increasing prevalence of this technology in media, and its importance in the energy transition and climate change mitigation.


#32 CSS in Europe - Still dead or rising like a Phoenix?

Episode 32, September 29

#32 CSS in Europe - Still dead or rising like a Phoenix?

Most pathways to climate neutrality include the use of carbon management technologies, like carbon capture and storage (CCS). In many ways, the technology is mature, but still needs massive upscaling to mitigate the worst impacts of climate change. Has CCS been overlooked? What is the current situation in Europe? What policies are needed to move this forward?

In this week's episode, we grill Eadbhard Pernot about CCS and pepper him with popular Internet arguments. Eadbhard is a Policy Manager with the Clean Air Task Force (CATF) in Brussels - a global NGO working to rapidly reduce emissions while advancing climate solutions. In his role, he supports the carbon capture team in developing and implementing carbon capture policy advocacy in the European Union.


#29 US Climate Bill: $369 billion for the climate (with James Murray from Business Green)

Episode 29, August 17

#29 US Climate Bill: $369 billion for the climate (with James Murray from Business Green)

The Inflation Reduction Act promises a $369 billion investment in climate action - the largest in U.S. history - and could drive significant emissions reductions. Its passing is both surprising, controversial, and full of compromises. To get the gist of it, we sat down with the founding editor of BusinessGreen.com, James Murray, who explains why he thinks the legislation's climate provisions will "turbocharge" US climate action.


#28 Clean Tech Impact Investing - How venture capital can accelerate the energy transition (with Puck Hegeman, Wire Private Markets Fund)

Episode 28, August 4

#28 Clean Tech Impact Investing - How venture capital can accelerate the energy transition (with Puck Hegeman, Wire Private Markets Fund)

Traditionally, business school teaches us to maximize profits. Is this really what the world needs right now? In this week's episode, we talk to Puck Hegeman about the practice and importance of financing startup companies and small businesses, and give advice to conscious startups that look beyond just making money.

Hegeman is a private equity impact investor at Wire Private Markets Fund (WPMF) - a provider of solutions for private investors and foundations to invest their wealth consciously. Puck is an experienced impact investor who previously worked for the Dutch Development Bank (FMO), and wrote her PhD thesis on the effects of the green transition at NTNU in Trondheim.

Impact Institute -Why do they do it? Corporate venture capital investments in cleantech startups - LinkedIn / puck@wiregroup.com


#24 Floating Solar (with Per Lindberg, CEO of Sunlit Sea)

Episode 24, June 9

#24 Floating Solar (with Per Lindberg, CEO of Sunlit Sea)

Per Lindberg is the CEO and co-founder of Sunlit Sea - a technology provider to the floating solar industry, that aims to address the potential of optimizing cost, longevity, power production, operation and maintenance. He has over 10 years of experience within the solar industry and explains both pros and cons of floating solar technology.

How does it harmonize with other energy sources? How does it compare to onshore solar? And how will the floating solar market look in the coming years? Join us, and let's find out!

 


#22 The Future of Flow Batteries (with Brian Stead, CEO of Bryte Batteries)

Episode 22, May 12

#22 The Future of Flow Batteries (with Brian Stead, CEO of Bryte Batteries)

Bryte Batteries thinks unused, self-produced energy could be strategically stored and sold by utilizing cost-efficient and safe battery technologies. This creates business opportunities for building owners in most sectors, that are both profitable and environmentally friendly. 

This week's guest is the CEO of Bryte Batteries - an NTNU affiliated startup. Brian explains to us the principles behind flow batteries, the pros and cons compared to other battery technologies, and the potential he sees in them. Please go check them out at bryte.no or contact Brian over at his LinkedIn.


#19 Energy Efficiency First (with Jan Steinbach & Wolfgang Eichhammer)

Episode 19, Apr 14

#19 Energy Efficiency First (with Jan Steinbach & Wolfgang Eichhammer)

What if we treat energy efficiency as a source of energy in its own right? Investors could prioritize more cost-effective demand-side solutions instead of complex and costly energy sources and new infrastructure. Essentially reducing fossil fuels consumption and energy production while increasing independency and security of supply. Reduced energy demand could also control the level of investment needed for the transition toward renewables.

In this episode we invited Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Eichhammer and Dr. Jan Steinbach to discuss the "energy efficiency first principle"- a key element of EU policy on emissions reduction, which highlights energy efficiency's importance in planning and investment processes in the energy transition.


#13 Invasion of Ukraine - implication for energy policy in Europe (with Thijs van de Graf)

Episode 13, Mar 3

#13 Invasion of Ukraine - implication for energy policy in Europe (with Thijs van de Graf)

This episode comes out on day eight of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. War, destruction and death have been flickering across our TV and mobile screens in recent days. These actions in themselves are terrible, and we realize that this war is likely to turn the tide on European energy policy.

In this episode, I am joined by Thijs van de Graf from Ghent University. Thijs is Associate Professor of International Politics at Ghent University in Belgium. He shares insights into how dependent Europe is on Russian fossil fuels, and we discuss what kind of implications this geopolitical crisis may have on European energy policy.


#15 Offshore Wind Power (with John Olav Tande)

Episode 15, Mar 17

#15 Offshore Wind Power (with John Olav Tande)

Chief Scientist and Research Manager at SINTEF Energy, John Olav Giæver Tande is a pioneer in floating offshore wind energy and head the NorthWind research center - an 8 year, 31.5 million EUR research center working to make wind power cheaper, efficient, and more sustainable. The European Commission wants 1/3 of all electricity to 2050 supplied by offshore wind, making it the backbone of the entire energy supply in Europe.


#09 Just Transition (with Rita V. D'Oliveura Bouman)

Episode 9, Feb 3

#09 Just Transition (with Rita V. D'Oliveura Bouman)

How do we transition away from carbon-intensive industries while avoiding unemployment? How do we rebuild communities in a sustainable way after losing major job providers? How can marginalized groups get their opinion heard when their society must change?

Society faces huge changes in the energy transition. Technological solutions get most of the attention for reducing emissions and transitioning. However, research shows that these technology implementations have unforeseen consequences, like increasing inequality. To get everyone on board and working towards common goals, we need to make it fair. Just Transition explains how we can solve these issues. It's a framework that aims to ensure we take care of people affected by the transition towards a decarbonized society. This includes not only those with a voice, but also smaller groups without the resources to speak up.

This podcast episode was first published as a pilot episode in the spring of 2021. In this episode, Rita Vasconcellos Oliveira, a researcher in Fair and Sustainable Energy Transitions and the project manager of Energy Transitions Week 2022, gives us an introduction to Just Transition.


#06 Introduction to Sustainability Transitions Theory (with Prof. Tomas Skjølsvold)

Episode 6, Jan 13

#06 Introduction to Sustainability Transitions Theory (with Prof. Tomas Skjølsvold)

Technology alone can't magically solve all our challenges. It is highly intertwined with user practices, other technologies, business models, value chains, regulations and structures in organizations, institutions, and policy. Therefore, while radical innovation and its diffusion is necessary, socio-technical systems always undergo long term incremental changes. In light of this, understanding these transformations becomes vital when trying to accelerate an Energy Transition that depends on change to both existing and future technologies.

Giving us an introduction to how to understand these dynamics, Deputy Director for FME NTRANS, Professor Tomas M. Skjølsvold from NTNU's Department of Interdisciplinary Studies of Culture (KULT) joins in this week's episode. He researches society-wide transformations and transitions, much in the field of Energy Systems, and how one can work to make such transitions as democratic, inclusive and responsible as possible. Underlying this is a concern for the way science, technology and society interacts, and how this tends to privilege certain voices and interests, while marginalizing others.

Link to articles mentioned in the episode: Technology Innovation System Analysis 1 & 2, Niche Destabilization 1 & 2.


Climate Agreements: COP26, lobbyism, and how it works from the inside (with Prof. Christina Voigt)

Episode 3, Dec 23

Climate Agreements: COP26, lobbyism, and how it works from the inside (with Prof. Christina Voigt)

In this episode, I talk to Prof. Christina Voigt. Christina is a Professor at the University of Oslo and has been a member of the climate negotiation delegation of Norway for years. 

The climate negotiation process occurring through the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is the primary forum for international cooperation on stabilizing atmospheric greenhouse gas emissions. The goal is to prevent catastrophic anthropogenic interference with the climate system aka. climate change. 

In this episode, Christina explains how the climate negotiations processes were established in the 1990s and how it developed over time. Furthermore, you will get an overview of COP 26 in Glasgow and the results it yielded. At last, you will learn where the next COPs will take place and what topics will be negotiated.


#62 Sparking Innovation: Israel's Journey in the Energy Transition (with Eshel Lipman, Ignite the Spark)

Episode 62, 21 December

#62 Sparking Innovation: Israel's Journey in the Energy Transition (with Eshel Lipman, Ignite the Spark)

During the Oslo Innovation Week at the end of September, I interviewed Israeli entrepreneur and investor, ⁠Eshel Lipman⁠, founder of ⁠Ignite the Spark⁠ - a community that promotes EnergyTech in Israel.

In this episode, Lipman shares insights into his journey from engineering in Australia to founding an energy tech startup, and the intricacies of Israel's energy landscape. We talk about the shift from coal to natural gas and the country's renewable energy goals. Despite abundant sunshine, Israel faces challenges in expanding solar energy due to grid congestion and geographical constraints. Lipman also touches on Israel's electric vehicle market, noting the slow adoption rate and the need for better public transportation infrastructure.

The episode concludes with a discussion on the future of Israel's energy transition. Lipman underscores the necessity of regulatory and grid reforms to accelerate the deployment of solar and energy storage solutions. He envisions Israel as a burgeoning source of energy tech innovation, attracting global attention and investment, and contributing significantly to the global energy transition.


#59 Just Transitions - Why and How (with Dr. Kristen Jenkins, University of Edinburgh)

Episode 59, 9 November

#59 Just Transitions - Why and How (with Dr. Kristen Jenkins, University of Edinburgh)

In this podcast episode, we explore the concept of just transitions in the context of energy transition. The episode features a conversation with Dr. Kirsten Jenkins, a senior lecturer in Energy, Environment, and Society at Edinburgh University, discussing the challenges and complexities of achieving a fair and equitable energy transition. We delve into four key principles or tenets: distributional justice, recognition of affected communities and individuals, responsibility for addressing injustices, and procedural justice, which involves evaluating the processes in place to address these issues. The conversation highlights real-life examples, such as the impact of cobalt mining, building on grazing lands used by Sami reindeer herders, challenges faced by oil and gas workers, and issues related to the implementation of renewable energy technologies. The episode emphasizes the importance of acknowledging historical injustices, considering the cultural identities of affected communities, and ensuring that the energy transition benefits everyone, leaving no one behind.


#56 Managing Norway's Impending Power Deficit (with Nils Røkke, SINTEF)

Episode 56, 28 September

#56 Managing Norway's Impending Power Deficit (with Nils Røkke, SINTEF)

In this episode, I interview the Executive Vice President for Sustainability at SINTEF, Nils Røkke, in front of a live audience during NTNU's ⁠Hyfer⁠ festival. The conversation, initially meant to focus on Norway's looming power deficit, also encompasses other aspects of Norway's energy transition and the challenges it faces

Røkke explains that Norway is one of the most electrified countries globally, but that it still relies on fossil fuels in some sectors. He touches on the trade-offs involved in the transition, such as social acceptance of renewable energy projects and the balance between affordability, competitiveness, and sustainability.

Røkke emphasizes the importance of developing renewables, energy efficiency, and offshore wind power to meet the growing energy demand while reducing carbon emissions. He also mentions the role of hydropower and the need for more investments in the energy sector to achieve decarbonization goals.

After our talk, we invited the audience to challenge Nils with some questions of their own.


#Bonus: Working for Equinor? Perspectives for Young Graduates (with Jacopo Iorino, Equinor)

Bonus episode, 17 Aug

#Bonus: Working for Equinor? Perspectives for Young Graduates (with Jacopo Iorino, Equinor)

In this summer bonus episode, Herman Hegli Sagør from YoungEnergy discusses various aspects of the energy transition with Jacopo Iorino from Equinor. They delve into Equinor's commitment to net-zero goals, renewable energy, and career opportunities for graduates interested in working in the renewable industry.

Iorino, a leader in Equinor's communications department, shares his experiences as a graduate within the company, where rotations among different departments are common. The conversation covers Equinor's efforts to balance oil and gas production with renewable energy growth, emphasizing increased carbon efficiency and developing renewable projects like wind and solar. Iorino highlights the company's focus on strategic planning, investment allocation, and the importance of individuals contributing to the energy transition within various roles. He explains how Equinor's diverse business segments allow employees to engage in different dimensions of the energy transition, whether one's passion lies in renewables, strategy, engineering, or other areas.


#52 The Future of Battery Production in Europe and Norway (with Hege Marie Norheim, FREYR)

Episode 52, 6 July

#52 The Future of Battery Production in Europe and Norway (with Hege Marie Norheim, FREYR)

In this episode of the NTNU Energy Transition Podcast, we invite ⁠Hege Marie Norheim⁠ to discuss the future of battery production in Europe. Hege, who is an executive vice president at FREYR, shares her journey from working in the Prime Minister's office in Norway to her current role in the battery industry. She helps us understand how batteries play a crucial role in the energy transition, by decarbonizing the transportation sector and scaling renewable energy sources like solar and wind.

Norheim sheds light on the growing demand for batteries in electric vehicles and energy storage systems. While discussing the potential for recycling used lithium-ion batteries from the mobility market, she emphasizes that the demand for fresh batteries is enormous and expected to increase significantly in the coming years.

The conversation also touches upon different types of batteries, including vanadium flow batteries used in stationary applications. Hege explains that each battery type has its own advantages and trade-offs depending on factors such as charging speed, energy storage capacity, and lifespan. She emphasizes the need for optimizing battery chemistry to meet various requirements.

Overall, this episode provides valuable insights into the role of batteries in the energy transition and the future of battery production in Europe.

 


#49 How to Scale Low-Carbon Technologies (with Dr. Julius Wesche)

Episode 49, 25 May

#49 How to Scale Low-Carbon Technologies (with Dr. Julius Wesche)

In this episode, we explore the topic of scaling low-carbon technologies. Without a guest this time, I will delve into my own field of study: Sustainability transition theory, innovation theory, and innovation systems theory, to shed light on what it takes to effectively scale low-carbon technology and accelerate the energy transition. I will share my own research and insights, aiming to provide valuable information for those involved in scaling low-carbon technology and driving the energy transition.

The episode starts by discussing sustainability transitions and the processes involved in shifting social-technical systems toward sustainability. I emphasize the multidimensional changes required, including technological, material, organizational, institutional, political, economic, and social-cultural aspects. You will learn how sustainability transitions are ongoing processes that take time and lead to the emergence of new products, services, business models, and organizations.

The episode then focuses on a framework called the multi-level perspectives, introduced by Frank Geels, which helps in understanding sustainability transitions. Geels’s framework includes the concepts of regimes (existing systems), landscapes (external pressures), and niches (emerging alternatives). I explain how regimes need external pressure from the landscape to break up and create space for more sustainable niche configurations, and highlight the importance of understanding these dynamics in order to drive effective scaling of low-carbon technologies.

 


#46 The Role of the University in Fighting Climate Change

Episode 46, 13 April

#46 The Role of the University in Fighting Climate Change

In this episode, we explore the intersection of science and activism in the fight against climate change. We delve into the growing movement of scientist activists, who are using their expertise and research to advocate for climate action through unconventional means, like civil disobedience.

Our guest is Angeline Bruls, a PhD candidate at NTNU's Department of Biology. Bruls is part of the group ⁠Scientist Rebellion⁠, who have an active group here in Trondheim. Together, we discuss the role of universities in the fight against climate change, where Brulss shares her experiences with NTNU, how Scientist Rebellion is influencing the university, and future goals.


#43 Transforming Norway - How solve the Norwegian Energy transition dilemmas (with Lars-Henrik Michelsen, Director - Norwegian Climate Foundation)

Episode 43, 2 March

#43 Transforming Norway - How solve the Norwegian Energy transition dilemmas (with Lars-Henrik Michelsen, Director - Norwegian Climate Foundation)

Lars-Henrik Paarup Michelsen is the Director of The Norwegian Climate Foundation - a think tank that specializes in climate issues, publishes energy-related news online, and organizes events on climate issues.

In this podcast episode, we discuss the challenges and opportunities facing Norway's energy industry. We explore the dilemma of moving away from a profitable oil and gas business model while still meeting short-term demand from Europe. The conversation raises questions about Norway's long-term strategy and the potential consequences of continuing to invest in oil and gas rather than transitioning to renewable energy solutions.

Also, check out The Norwegian Climate Foundation's podcast, "Energi og Klima".


#40 Capital and financing for Direct Air Capture (with Andrew Shebbeare, Counteract)

Episode 40, 19 January

#40 Capital and financing for Direct Air Capture (with Andrew Shebbeare, Counteract)

This podcast episode is the third in a series about Direct Air Capture (DAC), a technology that removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Our guest this time is Andrew Shebbeare, a managing partner at Counteract, a company that focuses on combatting climate change through Carbon Dioxide Removal (CDR) technologies through research, development, and investments. The episode covers topics such as the barriers, drivers, and types of markets for DAC, and discusses what needs to happen for it to scale in the future.

Mentioned in this episode: https://www.cdr.fyi/

 


#36 Energy Transition in Switzerland (with Florian Egli & Léonore Hälg)

Episode 36, 24 November

#36 Energy Transition in Switzerland (with Florian Egli & Léonore Hälg)

What are the first thoughts you have when you think about Switzerland? Mountains, Skiing, Nature, Toblerone? For sure! But what you may not have known is that the pace of the energy transition in Switzerland has not been amazingly fast in the last years. However, now, with the energy crises and spiking prices for fossil fuel things seem to be moving at a different pace. In this episode you will learn how the energy sector in Switzerland is structured, what the challenges are that the system is being faced with, and how the country is now embarking on an acceleration trajectory. For this episode I am joined by Dr. Florian Egli from ETH Zurich and by Dr. Léonore Hälg from the Swiss Energy Foundation.


#35 COP27: What it takes to make it a success (with Prof. Christina Voigt)

Episode 35, November 10

#35 COP27: What it takes to make it a success (with Prof. Christina Voigt)

In this episode, I talk to Prof. Christina Voigt. Christina is a Professor at the University of Oslo and has been a member of the climate negotiation delegation of Norway for years. The last time we talked was right after COP26, in episode 3 of this podcast.

The climate negotiation process occurring through the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is the primary forum for international cooperation on stabilizing atmospheric greenhouse gas emissions. The goal is to prevent catastrophic anthropogenic interference with the climate system aka. climate change.

In this episode, we talk about expected negotiations at COP27, the current situation in the world, and the results we hope for in the coming weeks.


#34 The Future of Oil and Gas in Norway (with Frida Eklöf Monstad, Equinor)

Episode 34, October 27

#34 The Future of Oil and Gas in Norway (with Frida Eklöf Monstad, Equinor)

This week we ask Equinor - Norway's state-owned multinational energy company - straight up: Why are you still investing in oil and gas?

As society transitions away from fossil fuels, a huge oil and natural gas exporter like Norway will face huge changes. To understand how Equinor is positioning itself for this, we talked to Frida Eklöf Monstad, who works with business development for low-carbon solutions.


#33 Will the energy crisis derail the EU climate commitments? (with Taube van Melkebeke)

Episode 33, October 13

#33 Will the energy crisis derail the EU climate commitments? (with Taube van Melkebeke)

High energy prices and a reduced supply of natural gas are pressuring the European economy. What possible impacts will this have on Europe's climate ambitions? Already we have seen a shift back to coal, and with the current war in Ukraine as a backdrop, it is little wonder that many raise concern.

To help us ponder this question, we've brought along Taube van Melkebeke for this week's episode. She is a Policy Advisor on EU Politics and Climate Governance at E3G - an independent think tank whose aim is to steer the global transformation at the pace our planet requires. Before joining E3G, Taube was an attaché at the Permanent Representation of Belgium to the EU.


#31 Energy Transition in Romania and Eastern Europe (with Dr. Luciana Miu)

Episode 31, September 15

#31 Energy Transition in Romania and Eastern Europe (with Dr. Luciana Miu)

What are the challenges Romania faces in the Energy Transition? The Eastern European country has committed itself to phase out coal, and plans a transition to renewables like solar and hydrogen. How are things progressing, and what are the current hurdles?

To learn about Romania's energy system, policies, markets and social situation, we talked with Dr. Luciana Miu. She is is the Head of Clean Economy at Energy Policy Group - an independent think-tank located in Bucharest, specializing in energy and climate policy, market analytics and energy strategies. She holds a Master’s degree in Sustainable Energy Systems from the University of Edinburgh and a PhD in Energy Efficiency of Residential Buildings from the Imperial College London. Before joining EPG, Luciana worked for the UK Parliament and for the British Government’s Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), as well as a consultant for Climate-KIC and London City Hall.


#30 Is Funding Technology Enough: Social Sciences and Humanities in the Energy Transition (with Prof. Chris Foulds)

Episode 30, September 1

#30 Is Funding Technology Enough: Social Sciences and Humanities in the Energy Transition (with Prof. Chris Foulds)

Technologies are often spotlighted when examining different energy transition pathways. However, how we use and produce technology and energy plays a significant role. Profound changes are needed to avoid dangerous climate change, and can only be achieved through public support for relevant policies. Therefore, implementing energy policies requires knowledge of citizens' lifestyles and behaviors. That's where Social Sciences and Humanities (SSH) steps in.


#27 Roof Integrated Solar (with Helen Anijalg, Co-Founder of Roofit.solar)

Episode 27, July 21

#27 Roof Integrated Solar (with Helen Anijalg, Co-Founder of Roofit.solar)

Our guest this week is Helen Anijalg, Co-Founder of Roofit.solar - a provider of building integrated photovoltaic (BIPV) construction elements that replace the conventional roofing and facade materials. By combining solar technology and building material, homeowners can invest in visually appealing roofs and facades that, over time, pay for themselves. Listen to learn more about the technology and developing markets from an inside perspective. Check out https://roofit.solar/ for inspirational photos, links to social media, and more information.


#20 Transformation or Substitution? The diffusion of electric cars in Norway (with Prof. Marianne Ryghaug)

Episode 20, Apr 21

#20 Transformation or Substitution? The diffusion of electric cars in Norway (with Prof. Marianne Ryghaug)

Marianne Ryghaug holds a PhD in Political Science and is a Professor of Science and Technology Studies at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. She leads the Center for Energy, Climate and Environment at the Department of Interdisiplinay studies of Culture, NTNU. The last years her research has particularly been focused on research related to sociotechnical transitions in the areas of smart grids, smart homes and cities, electric vehicles, transportation and sustainable mobility.


#12 Why and How to Empower Youth in the Energy Transition

Episode 12, Feb 25

#12 Why and How to Empower Youth in the Energy Transition

The energy transition is the generational challenge of our time. It can not be solved by researchers in their ivory towers, nor policymakers in the country's capitals. Instead, we need all parts of society to engage and work towards a common goal. One group that is often overlooked, but that is key for the transformational processes that we are going through, is the youth. First, if today's youth is not empowered they won't be the ones who can do the heavy lifting in 5-10 years. Second, there is a lot of climate-positive projects that young gals and guys can do already today. To empower youth, a group of friends of mine founded Student Energy some 15 years ago in Calgary, Canada. Their mission is to empower young people to accelerate the sustainable energy transition through a variety of initiatives, including university-based Chapters, and the largest student-led energy conference in the world. In this podcast episode, I talk with another friend of mine Meredith Adler. Meredith is the executive director of Student Energy and helps build this wonderful organization. Go check it out.


#14 Wind Power in Europe (with Giles Dickson)

Episode 14, Mar 10

#14 Wind Power in Europe (with Giles Dickson)

This episode comes out on day eight of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. War, destruction and death have been flickering across our TV and mobile screens in recent days. These actions in themselves are terrible, and we realize that this war is likely to turn the tide on European energy policy.

In this episode, I am joined by Thijs van de Graf from Ghent University. Thijs is Associate Professor of International Politics at Ghent University in Belgium. He shares insights into how dependent Europe is on Russian fossil fuels, and we discuss what kind of implications this geopolitical crisis may have on European energy policy.


#08 The Rise of Solar PV (with Prof. Gregory Nemet)

Episode 8, Jan 27

#08 The Rise of Solar PV (with Prof. Gregory Nemet)

'Solar energy is a substantial global industry, one that has generated trade disputes among superpowers, threatened the solvency of large energy companies, and prompted serious reconsideration of electric utility regulation rooted in the 1930s. One of the biggest payoffs from solar’s success is not the clean inexpensive electricity it can produce, but the lessons it provides for innovation in other technologies needed to address climate change', says the description of UW-Madison professor Gregory F. Nemet's 2019 book: How Solar Energy Became Cheap.

Nemet is a former teacher of mine and was kind enough to guest in today's episode. We talk about different ways countries utilize PV's, and ask: How come this relatively old technology wasn't implementet in lager scale until recent years and what lessons can we take from this?


#05 Joe Biden's Infrastructure Bill and its influence on the Energy Transition (with Dr. Steven Gabriel)

Episode 5, Jan 6

#05 Joe Biden's Infrastructure Bill and its influence on the Energy Transition (with Dr. Steven Gabriel)

In late 2021, US President, Joe Biden signed a 1.2 trillion infrastructure bill in law, a key part of his agenda for the US' future economy, but also climate change mitigation. At that same time, NTNU adjunct professor Steven Gabriel from the University of Maryland paid us a visit. So naturally, I sat down to chat with him about this bill and what it could mean for the American Energy Transition.


Why there is no doubt - and how we can fix it (with Prof. Kimberly Nicholas)

Episode 2, Dec 16

Why there is no doubt - and how we can fix it (with Prof. Kimberly Nicholas)

There is no doubt. Climate change is happening. And yes, the vast majority of researchers agree that it is us who cause it. But there is hope. We can fix this.

In this episode, I talk to Kimberly Nicholas, a climate scientist and professor at Lund University in Sweden. Kimberly was born and raised in California and has a PhD from Stanford University. Recently, during one of her keynote presentation in Bergen, I thought: 'I just have to have her on the podcast.'

In this episode you will learn why the climate is warming, why we are sure that it is us, that it is bad, but also how we can fix it.

Kimberly recently published a book about this very topic. It is called Under the Sky We Make. You can reach out to her on Twitter and LinkedIn, or through her newsletter.


Why this podcast (with host, Julius Wesche)

Episode 1, Dec 16

Why this podcast (with host, Julius Wesche)

In episode 1 we introduce you to the Podcast and what you learn from listenting to it.

The podcast is hosted by Julius Wesche. Julius is a researcher at the NTNU Energy Transition Initiative and the NTNU Department of Interdisciplinary Studies of Culture. He also runs the enPower Podcast on the German Energy Transition and the scicomX Podcast on digital science communication. You can find him also on Twitter, LinkedIN, and Instagram


Social media