For EFD Induction, the final quarter of 2020 brought several very large sales of hardening machines for the manufacturing and maintenance of wind turbines. In December alone, EFD Induction got a record-breaking order from a leading Chinese enterprise dealing in slewing bearings for windmills. A few weeks previously, a world-leading company in India as well as another major Chinese company rewarded EFD Induction with large orders in the same segment.
It seems that the COVID-19 pandemic has not only accelerated the digital transformation, but also paved the way for greener choices. Perhaps the short-term effects of less pollution served as an eye-opener?
As more than a third of the world's population was placed under lockdown, energy demand dropped by almost four percent over the first quarter of 2020, causing a near-collapse in some sectors of the energy industry. Not so with renewable power sources, which demonstrated an amazing resilience during the crisis and hit record growth last year.
The reduction in transportation and production resulted in carbon dioxide emissions plunging by a global average of 17 % in April. But, as people hunkered down in misery indoors, nature positively thrived. Air pollution drastically decreased as air traffic was virtually non-existent, factories were closed and hardly any cars were on the road. We all watched in awe as smog lifted from cities that had been shrouded in dirty yellow clouds for decades. Suddenly, the sky over New Dehli was blue again and snow-capped mountains were clearly visible from downtown Los Angeles.
EYE-OPENER: Air pollution lifted amazingly fast during the lockdown. Photo: Reuters
Still, however striking these short-term effects of environmental convalescence are, they may unfortunately, not last. The risk is that once COVID-19 is under control and the economy recovers, energy consumption and emissions could bounce back to pre-pandemic levels. Already, we have seen a surge to within about 5% of last year’s levels.
No doubt, economic growth has been a key driver of greenhouse gas emissions. An ever-expanding economy increases demand for energy, so the challenge that the world faces now is to find a path forward that is both green and economically viable – to build back better by cutting emissions as well as boosting the economy.
The so-called “energy transition” refers to the shift from fossil-based energy production to renewable energy sources. It has been talked about for many years, but regulations and commitment to decarbonization have at best been mixed. Now, however, the pandemic has lifted this higher up on the agenda.
The International Energy Agency has set out a global pathway for a green recovery, focusing on reforms to energy generation and consumption, advising that wind and solar power should be a top focus. There is broad support from governments, activists and academia across the world to ensure that investments to lift countries out of the current economic recession are spent in a way that combats global warming. This includes a reduction in the use of fossil fuel, as well as investments in clean transport, renewable energy, eco-friendly buildings, and sustainable corporate and financial practices.
GREEN ENERGY: Perhaps it is high time we started thinking about renewable energy sources as less of an alternative and more of an obvious choice.
At EFD Induction, we are truly dedicated to do our part to support this development going forward. Our expertise and technology will contribute to make the manufacture and maintenance of turbines and other tools of the energy industry a clean and green process, and we are delighted to see that major players in this sector recognise the benefits we offer.We are positive that the energy transition will continue to increase in importance as investors prioritize environmental, social and governance factors, and EFD Induction is the ideal partner to assist and advice companies operating in the renewable-energy sector.