Photo: Five initiatives which address Spain’s energy transition and industrialization challenges. Credit: Unsplash
Genewin's second priority addresses energy transition and reindustrialization. As with the first roundtable on digital health, 5 sets of initiatives and ideas have been proposed to respond to this priority's major strategic challenges, with Marcelino Oreja, CEO of Enagás, playing a key role in defining them.
Genewin is sponsored by Endeavor, Fundación Transforma España, Lanzadera, Telefónica Open Future, South Summit, Barcelona TechCity y Opinno. Its main objective is to propose, from civil society, innovative ideas to promote the country's recovery.
he huge investment that energy transition involves is a great opportunity not only to stimulate the economy in the short term and mitigate the impact of post-COVID lockdown measures, but it can also contribute to the reindustrialization of our economy and to a change in our manufacturing system. The dual objective is to fight climate change and lay the groundwork for a more productive, competitive and sustainable economy in the medium and long term”. says Marcelino Oreja, CEO of ENAGAS, who has been leading Spain's energy transition and industrialization round table, with a special focus on defining the challenges involved in undertaking this new cycle of investment.
The challenges have been defined by grouping them under five headings, taking into account Spain's economic structure, as well as its institutional framework.
- Challenge 1: The internal governance of new industrial policy: allocation, monitoring and evaluation of funds.
- Challenge 2: The need to include our business fabric as a whole in the new productive system that will result from the forthcoming transformation.
- Challenge 3: The restructuring of sectors that carry the greatest weight in our economy (tourism, construction and the automotive industry).
- Challenge 4: How to encourage scientific research and innovation.
- Challenge 5: How to strengthen the country's brand and its strategic positioning in the industrial, scientific and energy transition fields.
This second Genewin roundtable aimed to propose specific initiatives concerning energy transition and re-industrialization to influence, from civil society, the way in which the administration and decision-makers act.
In March and April, more than 80 institutions participated in the process of defining the five resulting initiatives, generating around a hundred proposals, from which some twenty groups of ideas were examined in five workshops. In particular, we addressed the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Tourism, the Ministry for Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge and their counterparts at regional and local level,” says Elena Rodríguez, Opinno's project manager in charge of the initiative.
The 5 initiatives resulting from this second roundtable are:
1. NATIONAL ENTREPRENEURSHIP AND OPEN INNOVATION PLAN
This proposal's goal is to transform Spain into a benchmark for industrial innovation and energy transition by creating open innovation models that involve and empower all the players in the ecosystem. The key aspects include establishing innovation hubs that include the entire value chain, creating a regulatory framework that promotes collaboration and including an entrepreneurship training plan across all levels.
2. SPAIN, A H2 COUNTRY
Developing renewable hydrogen has become a strategic investment, especially for industry and transport. The European Union itself estimates that by 2050, hydrogen will account for 14% of the energy mix, compared to 2% today. For this reason, there is a proposal for the creation of a National H2 Hub accompanied by designing an ambitious and synchronized national plan for all the industries concerned.
3. AN INDEPENDENT BODY TO MANAGE FUNDING
Spain is the second country to benefit the most from the funds that Europe has made available to EU members. This budgetary increase combined with time constraints, involves a significant increase in the Administration's workload. For this reason, in order to improve agility and transparency, an independent body is proposed to be created to help manage and channel the different funds.
4. GENERATING AND ATTRACTING SCIENTIFIC TALENT
At the end of 2019, more than 87,000 people from scientific fields had decided to leave our country to embark on their professional careers in other geographical locations. For this reason, we need a program aimed at generating, retaining and attracting scientific talent. The key elements include creating an attractive educational model for technical careers, strengthening the connection between the academic and business worlds, and creating a more motivating business ecosystem.
5. CONVERTING REFINERIES INTO HIGH-VALUE CHEMICAL INDUSTRIES
Given the EU's decarbonization objectives, converting refineries into a chemical industry would increase the country's competitivity. To this end, it is vital to create a Hub with representation from the entire value chain.
The third roundtable on Sustainable Mobility and Infrastructure is currently underway, and the three remaining roundtables (Agriculture and primary sector; Tourism; and Digitalization of the country) are expected to start in the next few months, thus completing the six strategic priorities defined by Genewin.
A document summarizing the proposed project ideas can currently be found at www.genewin.es
Genewin, civil society at the service of the country.