Speaker 

Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome to the stage our renewable energy takes center stage panel

 
Sime Jurac 

Morning everybody and thank you for attending the renewable energy take center stage session. We are joined today by four great panelists. First is Janet Lin, Director of energy and digital at Panasonic. Martin Powell, Chief Sustainability Officer at Siemens USA. Connor Prochaska, chief commercialization officer at the US Department of Energy, and Ramya Swaminathan, CEO of Malta Incorporated, and myself My name is Sime Jurac. I'm a commercial director at Bloomberg Nef. This sessions abstract is as follows. Renewable Energy is poised to revolutionize the world's energy supply, visionaries and venture capitalists have invested billions in clean energy will cities are targeting higher goals of renewable energy to help combat climate change? Feel like that abstract would have been great maybe eight years ago. I feel like we're a little bit further ahead today but I'm sure you know Most of the discussion will be focusing on that. But before we kick things off, I wanted to take some time to do a quick round of intros with each of the panelists than myself. So Janet, feel free to talk a little bit more about your background, current focus and really why you're up to CES.

 
Janet Lin 

Thank you. Sime. So my role at Panasonic is to work with various businesses across the world, under the Panasonic family to to, to work across the globe in the Panasonic family to advance renewable energy and mobility infrastructure, and to focus on working with startups and other big companies to co innovate on business models and technologies and solutions that are to disrupt traditional transportation and energy systems that tend to emit a lot of carbon.

 
Martin Powell 

Thank you. Hi, I'm Martin Powell, I have been recently made responsible for making Siemens in the US zero carbon, which is no small challenge. We have over 500 sites here. Quite a big energy footprint. And I'm also responsible for our city urban practice. So we also work with big cities to see how they can meet their zero carbon goals as well. I formerly worked in the mayor's office in London, so you can tell I'm not from the US. I thought that was a Texas now, Texas, I live in New York. So I'm a New Yorker. But I worked in the mayor's office in London. And so working with big organizations and governments is something that I've trying to apply to our our job here.

 
Conner Prochaska 

Well, howdy. My name is Conner Prochaska, and I am the chief commercialization officer for the US Department. Energy. It's a new role. It's about a year old that we've created at the department. And in that role, I also am the Director of the Office of Technology transitions, which is about a five year old office that we've added the department. In our role, what we're trying to do is it every year, we were talking backstage to the Department of Energy is wildly misnamed. We are the closest thing that the US government has to the Department of science or Office of Science. We do roughly $18 billion a year, a year in research across the Department of Energy ranging from how to discover dark matter with new train of science and accelerators to how to make more efficient solar panels. So we range the gamut. We have four of the 10 fastest supercomputers in the world, user facilities, 17 US National Labs, and five facilities across the United States. My role as the chief commercialization officer is to maximize the impact of that $18 billion worth of us taxpayer research and we believe that part of making that happen act as as true as possible, is to make sure that we make people aware of what we're doing. We have smart policies, and that we provide access to industry to researchers to users, to make sure that we can move in the in the direction of all the goals that we talked about. So that's my role. Glad to be here.

 
Ramya Swaminathan 

I'm Ramya Swaminathan, I am the CEO of multa. We are a company that is developing a technology for long duration, low cost, energy storage. I share with Connor a birthday a first birthday not too far in the distant past multa spun out from x alphabets moonshot factory just a little over a year ago. And our goal is really to be part of the transformation of energy infrastructure globally.

 
Sime Jurac 

Excellent and I work for Bloomberg Nef for Bloomberg primary research arm focused on clean energy, advanced transport, innovative materials, industry digitalization and commodities. And we basically help corporate strategy finance and policy professionals navigate Change and hopefully generate opportunities towards a lower carbon future. My first set of questions were for Connor, and had to do with batteries. So Connor batteries, aside from Tesla are being sourced abroad, which can be a potential security threat, lead to job loss, maybe falling competitiveness of key industries and even adopting standards. Is the US staying ahead or falling behind other countries in terms of expertise and lower carbon technologies?

 
Conner Prochaska 

Sure, I think there's a couple aspects to that question. You know, one, I think lithium ion is a lesson learned. There was just some some great Nobel Prize winners that received the Nobel Prize for their work on lithium ion batteries. And those scientists did a large part of their research funded by the Department of Energy. Now, to your point, we don't really have a industry here in the United States to speak of. There's lessons to be learned there. There's there's and what the lessons are is we need to develop policies at the federal level. With our research dollars, that don't choke off the ability of companies and research that's funded by the Department of Energy to go out and make an impact, but also that we pay attention that this research as it's financed by US taxpayers, we'd like to see the benefit, economic benefit the industry, thrive here in the United States. And so what smart policies can we put in that are not too restrictive, that killing industry, but then also make it a capability in an industry that can grow here and be successful? I don't believe we're falling behind. Programs at the Department of Energy include very well named programs like beyond lithium ion batteries, is a real program at the Department of Energy. Our days program and our Advanced Research Projects Agency is looking at next stage storage not just simply batteries, but how do we look at storage. To today, if you look at the read axios had an article about an announcement that we're working towards for a grand battery challenge that works across the Department of Energy to attack the issue, because we believe and I think it's pretty well known to anybody that's in the industry. Look, we can't make solar much cheaper than it is. We've got a lot of developments we're working on for wind power. But the the key, the Keystone to all of this at making it successful is storage. And how do we do that as we try to rebuild our grid more or less, I like to say we're trying to rebuild this grid, try to rebuild the plane while we're still flying it, we can't take it offline and put a whole new set of parameters up and then turn the grid back on. So if we want to move towards a zero emissions near zero emissions future, storage is key. We believe nuclear energy is key. And we believe staying at the forefront of what's next beyond just our lithium ion batteries or battery technology. Now, we think we're looking down the road.

 
Sime Jurac 

Yeah, well said. And as a follow up, what would be the role of the DMV and changing some of that, let's say in the absence of a broader industrial strength

 
Conner Prochaska 

I mean, to do the right, you know, to push the goal, I think what we're talking about right now with this grand challenge that like I said, we was mentioned this morning in the news, and a larger announcement will follow soon. The key is going across the different areas because I think traditionally, we've thought about at the Department of Energy, we have an Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Office, we have a fossil energy office, we have a nuclear energy office. Go on and on. We have offices that as you can see silos of excellence. The point of this is this storage mission and challenge cuts across all of them. Additionally, there's a major role for private industry and public private partnerships going forward, to make this successful, and to hit all the goals that I mentioned earlier about it. So I think the department bringing together industry and our research that we have in a purpose driven way is very important to move us to the next step.

 
Sime Jurac 

Excellent. You know at last year's Bloomberg Nef, New York summit, it's a conference that we hold every year actually holds five of them now But the main ones in New York, but we had our head of America's eaten ziller conducted onstage interview with Denver wet. He's the head of the GOP now he was the deputy secretary at the time. But he discussed a bunch of different electricity generation technologies, small scale nuclear CCS and just the amount of r&d going into them. Can you talk a little bit more about that and maybe discuss what the energy transition and decarbonisation landscape look like from the dealies perspective, maybe more broadly?

 
Conner Prochaska 

Sure. You know, so what? We'll take our fossil energy office, for instance, you know, when you hear fossil energy office, people wonder, what are we researching on fossil energy? The biggest research budget within the fossil energy office is about carbon capture, whether that's physical carbon capture, or chemistry. And when we talk about, that's the main goal there, but it's also how do we make a cleaner fleet going forward? As I mentioned, we're trying to rebuild this while we're spoiled here in the United States, that we have a very reliable grid system. Here in the United States and the customer and the United States citizen expects that to stay that way. So as we transition to renewables, we still have to consider security. Because as the sector specific agency for cyber security on our grid, that's real if we talk about bi directional charging, and we talk about whether or not our autonomous vehicles are going to be storage mechanisms in the future, each one of those cars turns into a or battery spots, it turns into a cyber security, vulnerability. And so what do we do there? Our office of nuclear energy is working on small modular reactors, and new reactor designs that can be that can be brought onto the grid and different in varying ways. We've got Atlantis which is a offshore wind project, talking about how to redesign through controls and design in general different types of right now how we build windmills is pretty much we take the same windmill that we put in the the the plains of Abilene, Texas, and we just put it in the water So how can we do that with the law and wave and and work a little bit better and more efficiently in the design mechanisms of some of these great technologies?

 
Sime Jurac 

Excellent. Now, are there any other new technologies maybe on the horizon that can make a big impact that you're allowed to talk about today?

 
Conner Prochaska 

Well, I think that we are not to talk about everything that we're doing. But the, you know, the department, as I said, is Little Miss named. And we are doing a lot and we just created an artificial intelligence technology office, which we believe also has major energy ramifications. We are doing a ton of research into quantum information sciences and the repercussions that could follow with that, and how we keep the department in the forefront of quantum. We, as a department because of our capabilities with the supercomputers that we have and will soon be launching our first and creating it's already underway. The first excess sale computer will be at Argonne National Laboratory that will come online 2021 and be the fastest computer in the world. Again, the capabilities are pretty endless at the Department of Energy. And we always want to make sure the industry knows that these are available to you to us as user facilities. We really have three things that we offer industry and the research community, its researchers, research, and then facilities as well. So there's a lot going on. It's a pretty broad portfolio.

 
Sime Jurac 

Great, and it's starting to tie it back to the industry. How should companies work with the DMV and really with one another to better utilize these new technologies that can get us toward a lower carbon future

 
Conner Prochaska 

is a great example having Martin sitting right here. A year ago, we signed a credo which is a cooperative agreement with Siemens USA, and two of our national laboratories to do research together. We similarly have a agreement between National Renewable Energy Lab where Janet was it was a short time with air and also our National Energy Technology Lab. And then additionally are out of a national lab to work with Exxon Mobil to do 100 million dollars worth of clean oil, energy, oil and gas work specifically on clean gas. So those are examples of people that can come in but even small scale doesn't have to be 100 million dollars doesn't have to be Siemens, USA. Researchers and small companies can come in whether it's through our tech commercialization fund our Small Business Innovation Research grants, that we we fund the innovation economy here in the United States as much as we possibly can.

 
Sime Jurac 

Great. And last question. Is there anything else outside of power generation but maybe on display at CES, like additive manufacturing, aka 3d printing?

 
Conner Prochaska 

Sure. Yeah. So display on we have our artificial and technology, artificial intelligence technology office AI to that's on display in the artificial intelligence section of the show. But we also do advanced manufacturing, advanced manufacturing, 3d printing, we 3d printed Shelby Cobra. If anybody's looking for a Shelby Cobra Down at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. So there's a lot of cool and interesting things. And I just encourage anybody to, to look on lab partnering.org, which is our website where you can look at our user facility agreements, over 40,000 patents that are available for licensing and hundreds of researchers that exist across the country to help solve your problems, and do research that the US government's already doing. We just want to make sure that it gets out and doesn't just sit on a shelf, but it gets out and is utilized to the fullest extent it can.

 
Sime Jurac 

Great. And now moving back to industry. Start with Janet. Where does Panasonic fit within the value chain here?

 
Janet Lin 

Sure. And sometimes that's a difficult question to answer sometimes because our business portfolio is so diverse. Our brand is presumably to be a consumer electronics company. So hardware is clearly a core competency. But I think many would be surprised to to hear a Panasonic's role in providing foundational technologies that have really commercialize and shifted consumers sentiment towards the future of energy and the future of mobility and the future of cities. A lot of the panel topics are talking about today. And just to name a few examples over the past decade, our lithium ion cells have helped power Tesla's dominance in the consumer electric vehicle space. The decade before that our nickel metal hydride batteries have supported Toyota's groundbreaking Prius hybrid vehicle models, and then the decades to come. Another joint venture between our two companies to design and manufacture solid state batteries to power Toyota's all electric vehicles. And in the renewable energy space we design and manufacturer silicon hetero junction solar cells that achieve record breaking efficiencies of over 20% conversion of solar solar to usable electricity. And this year, compare that with our residential battery AC and DC coupled and home energy. Management System and in the hydrocarbon space. So over a decade ago, we launched the world's first residential fuel cell system. And since then have developed a hydrogen station that uses pure hydrogen as a fuel, where the hydrogen is produced from electrolyzing water that's powered by renewables. And this year at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games, we are going to showcase in the Olympic Village, every residential block of the Olympic village will be powered by hydrogen fuel cell generators, which will be the first town in Japan to power their to to to power full scale hydrogen infrastructure. So not just the residential complexes, but the outdoor street lighting, as well as the as well as security systems as well. So and also our vast portfolio also includes Energy Efficiency appliances and materials as well as air quality technologies. But just to highlight one that we're showcasing at CES this year, we have a refrigerated electric cargo truck that uses vacuum insulated panels that are 13 times cooler than the incumbent polyurethane cooler. So that lessens the need to draw from cooling needs from the cooling compression system as well as drawing less need for battery power for the electric truck. So these are just a few examples of how we build and promote technologies that are at for environmental benefit, if not, decarbonisation, so that tends to be where our core businesses fit within the value chain.

 
Sime Jurac 

Excellent. Just a follow up question to that. How was Panasonic strategy changed, maybe to take advantage of any potential opportunity around clean energy or just decarbonisation?

 
Janet Lin 

Thanks So yeah, our strategy has refined a bit in response to a couple of things. One, the value chain to deliver resilient power and reliable electricity in a clean and sustainable manner to the end consumer can be quite complex to state the blindingly obvious. And another is that to deploy new systems and technologies to serve and operate as long term assets can still be quite risky to ambassadors, although the environment for that is changing. We are seeing more favorable and cheaper renewable energy financing environments, but not necessarily all renewables and perhaps not yet for standalone storage. So we do have growing businesses that are seeking to tackle on these challenges in a couple of ways. One, we provide more integrated technology solutions, so shifting our business models a bit from India Virtual product sales to a business model that is more solutions and services based to to invest in partner and potentially acquire capabilities that we don't have or in geographies where we need them to be. And third, and over the past few years, we've really put a lot of investment and focus into deepening our digital and software layers over our hardware. So we build platforms for a diverse array of industries and governments to allow them to personalize their services, drive innovation, improve efficiencies and allow them to conduct their operations in a more environmental and sustainable manner. So for example, we operate the nation's largest intelligent traffic data network and that is in partnership with the Department of Transportation's of Colorado, Utah and Georgia. Although roadway safety is the primary driver for this and really addressing the 40,000 or so traffic deaths per year with a digital seatbelt, if you will, but the roadway efficiencies can also really alleviate traffic congestion and idling vehicles that have yet to convert to all electric or fuel cells. And we work as a as a technology agnostic Integrator for this to to pull together sensors and cameras and IoT and edge analytics to purpose we design and build an open data and or open development data sharing platform specifically for smart cities and transit agencies to facilitate deployment of vehicle to vehicle vehicle to infrastructure, vehicle to grid vehicle to everything communications. And so that's just some of the ways we have strategically After not just to be reactive, but also to be on the offensive as well, because we've truly seen that over the past decade, two of the industries that we've been operated in have have, you know, seen some tectonic shifts. One, the automotive industry is being disrupted increasingly by the future of the car that is increasingly connected, autonomous, electric and shared. Plus the energy industry is being disrupted increasingly by the power delivery and generation that is to be decentralized and digitized and decarbonized. And so we see over the next decade that both of these ecosystems are going to intersect in important ways and and and at least to have their activities provide reinforcing effects. And as we sit in the middle of both of those intersections, having consulted and collaborated With both industries, we see this as a major opportunity for us in the next decade and the decades to come.

 
Sime Jurac 

Great. And our department, Bloomberg Nef, we track and research and forecasting firm. So we track investment trends, policy, what companies are doing, but I'm just trying to get in your shoes today. And I guess how does? How do you value those benefits of Panasonic? So how do you say, yes, it was worth the investment?

 
Janet Lin 

And it's a good question. So as a couple as a public company, and with a diverse business portfolio, it obviously requires an ongoing portfolio management. So our core businesses do need to demonstrate sustainable long term profits and growth businesses of which I'm more a part of, at least need to demonstrate a path towards that. And because of the massive r&d investments and capital investments, all together do need to demonstrate their return and so for the companies that struggle to maintain their competitive ness. Do like for example, our LCD business do get managed out of the portfolio. And so we do need to maintain our competitive edge and the quality and reliability and long history of delivering and exceeding value to our customers needs and desires. And so that manages us quarter to quarter and I don't think that's terribly different from other public companies. But I would also say that long term, sustainable lasting value creation does come from channeling our strengths to address major societal shifts and challenges and that's what really drives the investment. That's what really drives the commitment and the passion from all the employees. I'm it is challenging in the energy industry space. We've definitely had some wins and losses and is for potentially a number of reasons lab to manufacturing can take some time. And then beyond that the system integration and installation and development and deployment and technology and project execution issues aside. There's the market adoption and and perhaps even the regulatory adoption to allow new technologies to qualify and participate in energy markets to earn revenues. And so there's a whole complexity to that. You know, new businesses like ours, don't have the benefit of hindsight to know whether these investments are indeed worth it. But we do. At least, rely on a pattern recognition of a long history of successes and failures. Plus, really analyzing signposts that really guide us in rigorously testing our hypotheses through pilots and demonstration and recruiting the best teams and also importantly, partners to share the risk and reward as we traverse this journey.

 
Sime Jurac 

Okay, but how about synergies and coordination among different departments or business units? So, how you thinking about decarbonisation there? Let's say automotive batteries? Sorry, stationary storage applications or maybe between home batteries and other home tech that you're seeing at CES.

 
Janet Lin 

Yeah, it's a it's a good question. Um, we think about the carbonation, decarbonisation and a couple of Broadway So, number one, as a corporate citizen, we do have a large portfolio of manufacturing facilities and offices and operations that do take on a lot of resources. And so it's important speaking of it to Martin's role, to have a environmental vision which we Do we have recently articulated so not just reducing energy emissions and waste through our directly owned and controlled facilities and manufacturing plants and scope one emissions as well as go to emissions, you know, really rigor and our supply chain, but also to really think through the scope three emissions of product stewardship and lifecycle management of our vast array of products and really moving us more towards circular economy based models. And so at a high level, that's, that's one way that we're really thinking about this. But to go specifically, around the synergies and coordinations around for example, battery products from automotive to industrial and consumer, for example. You know, one obvious way is really just the demands of automotive. The batteries do drive down the cost reductions. Have cascading effects to other parts of the business primarily industrial and consumer is one obvious way to look at it, but you know there there is no how that does get transferred from one segment to another. So, for example, as you design and selected battery it is for the primary purpose of its use case. So, whether if it's in the electric vehicles then it is selected and designed to to meet those needs. Now, you know, once that battery can get into 80 to 80% state of health, it there is a useful life, but it not may not necessarily be usable for the primary purposes but you could take the battery out, repurpose it and put these into secondary considerations as well. But also in terms of energy storage, being able to service multiple use cases from one asset In value sacking and various revenue streams, etc. There's always going to be, well, there's always going to be in some ways trade offs when you design a battery for a particular application, but then you have expectations that the battery is going to be able to service other applications. And so there's an art and trying to put all of that together. And so the synergies and coordinations from having service a lot of different industries, applications and use cases are necessary.

 
Sime Jurac 

Great, thanks, Martin. Back in q2 2019, Siemens announced plans to reduce its exposure to power generation equipment, and really refocus its core business on apparently more profitable digital and smart infrastructure segments. Seems in strategy is nearly the exact opposite of its major competitor GE, which will hold on to its gas and power division and spin out a software business into an independent company. Which of those digital slash smart infrastructure products do you see making the biggest positive impact for consumers and your own companies, decarbonisation efforts, loaded question, yeah.

 
Martin Powell 

First I just like to say fix the plane while you're flying on it. I'm gonna steal that just to let you know, I'm not gonna fly your plane but right. So innovation is is our business. So the opportunity to innovate around IoT, and digitalization of infrastructure is something that's very exciting for us. And obviously working with Connors and that department is is very much what we do. The opportunity in cities is going to be enormous. So if you connect all of your infrastructure data to a common platform, you can begin to prove business cases for many, many projects that are going to create efficiencies across your transport network, your energy network, your water network. So it's it's an amazing opportunity that's going to fall on every month. US city and every small US city as well. And it's not just about saving money, I mean that this is going to save carbon, it's going to reduce air pollution for people, it's going to have a societal impact, which is truly remarkable. And I think, you know, it's a responsible business, thinking beyond just money is going to be increasingly important as well. The spin off of the energy businesses to ensure that all of our energy generation capability is put into one bucket. There's a sense in that if you look at Los Angeles, they have a 2050 carbon neutral plan, which we modeled. And we looked at, of how they're going to do it, what they need to invest in to achieve zero carbon by 2050. And also 100% electric vehicles as well. And the findings were remarkable. I mean, this is going to take 30 years of focused investment in a whole range of different energy generation measures. You can't just slap a few solar panels on top of a few roofs, and think you're going to get there. This is an amazing transformation. And if you power the 3 million Angelino vehicles that are driving around electrically, you're going to need a model. There's 192,000 charged stations to do that. And just to save the safety doing the math, that's building 130 charge stations per week, every week for the next 30 years. So pretty, pretty intensive mission just to get the vehicles to that to that level of electrification. So those kind of pathways are exciting for us and having that in one company is obviously quite important as well.

 
Sime Jurac 

Yeah, and for vehicles, I think the BNF electric vehicle outlook south to 2040 2050, but we're seeing around 50% of new vehicle sales will have a plug. We'll see. We'll see how that works out. But right now, that's where all of our data, that's where it's showing us. Yeah. And take it talk a little bit, maybe less about about clean energy, but more about cyber security. What innovations do you think are needed for Siemens to be confident that let's say your Smart Cities applications are protected from a cyber security standpoint?

 
Martin Powell 

Yes, a good question. I mean, all all of our products and applications are protected, as most companies will claim. I don't think that's the issue. I think the issue is when you put them within a system, or again, take the city example if you connect your grid, to your all your buildings to your mobility network and traffic signaling. The weakness doesn't come from somebody hacking a products, the weakness comes from somebody, you know, throwing the whole system into disarray. Bye Finding the one weak point that has, you know, the highest risk for the city. So I think cyber security is no longer really about the product security. I think all of the big companies will all companies will take care of that. I think the issue will be evaluating the risk of somebody getting into a bigger system. At the very moment when you're going to need that system to work for you. So take an extreme event like Hurricane Sandy in New York, you might want to have a whole different set of protocols for how you get people out of the city in advance of the storm coming, how you manage your water and energy network while the storm is going on or in the immediate aftermath. And, you know, systems are vulnerable in those periods and it's creating a hierarchy, a secure hierarchy during that moment, I think is key.

 
Sime Jurac 

Okay, and now to talk about your actual role within sustainability or Really that the end SG aside from products, what else should companies like yours be doing? such as corporate energy requirement? and green bonds?

 
Martin Powell 

Yeah, it's a good, good question. You know, I think all the corporates can do more, we have a target to be net zero by 2013. Many companies do. I think we can do it faster. And I think we should aim to do it faster. I think big companies have a responsibility to impose those kinds of targets through their supply chains as well. I mean Panasonic's got a huge supply chain as Siemens does. So ensuring that all of our partners all of our suppliers are doing the same thing as well. And also trying to lead the transition. So we are members of the corporate electric vehicle Alliance, so we're looking to see how our fleets can become electrified and as fast time as possible. We're working with the American Society of Civil Engineers on a sustainable development initiative that helps engineers. Think about this when you're even contemplating what new projects look like, you know, what can they do? What role do they have? How can they source things that have very, very low carbon or zero carbon footprint? So, you know, I think everybody has a responsibility and each of us as individuals as well, I mean, we should all do our thing. I took the monorail here, very excited by that. So taking public transport having having this available, you know, doing those small measures, I think is now becoming increasingly important that everybody does that their part. What I would say is people should also focus on real decarbonisation. So there's a lot of companies out there buying class one anonymous racks renewable energy, energy. certificates, it would be better to buy virtual power purchase agreements then you're actually buying power from from somewhere that's actually producing it. And also, people should look within their own sites and their own campuses of how they can really reduce their footprint as well right down to basic installation. But putting up solar arrays over there, parking lots, connecting that to building management system. Having all of that integrated into 111 system is definitely going to help. I often take the train from New York to Washington DC, I don't see much solar actually on the monorail here in Las Vegas. I didn't see much solar on rooftops, even in the sort of business parks and offices. I think America could could focus a lot more on that. If you go to China right now. They're not focusing on how to come off fossil fuels. They're focusing on how to do more renewable energy, and that's quite an interesting mindset. If you get more renewable energy online, the fossil fuels will just go away over time, I think it's quite an interesting way of, of looking at things. So I think, you know, what I'm trying to do with with Siemens here in the US is think about how we can go side by sites and really bring its footprint zero.

 
Sime Jurac 

Okay. And as a follow up to that, what is Siemens doing to appeal more to investors? So how deeply it is? Is it involved in TFD? Or says we are really maybe changing its financial reporting to be more sustainable? Is it considering other things aside from that electric vehicle initiative, such as a science based target, or are you 100 goal?

 
Martin Powell 

Yeah, I mean, we publish all our targets. So it's effectively science based. We're very transparent about the emissions that that we have. We're setting up an infrastructure platform so that we can now actually take equity positions in big projects and big schemes across the US. I think that will help also schemes that we are building where we are looking to purchase the racks from those schemes, but also to put our own equity into those projects as well. There's nothing that's going to guarantee success of a of a Siemens wind farm and Siemens putting its own money into it as well. Right. So I think a lot of companies should be, be taking bigger equity positions in these sorts of things as well. So that that's that just a couple of examples of things we're doing.

 
Sime Jurac 

Okay, and to wrap things up, but in your opinion, what are the most, what's most impactful in terms of actual decarbonisation verse verse greenwashing?

 
Martin Powell 

Yeah, I mean, I think looking at each side individually and focusing on how to bring that footprint zero and also producing the volume, the gigawatts of power generation that we're going to need to power America over the next 1015 years. So we need to open up the waters to To build when the race we're going to have to put solar in parking lots and on top of buildings everywhere, and I think so focus on getting more and more renewable energy online, but also right down at the site level, focus on coming off fossil fuels as well.

 
Sime Jurac 

Great. Thank you. Ramya BNF tracks investment trends, technologies and policy among other areas within the energy storage industry. I saw plenty of investment activity around your technology over the past decade. But who is your competition? And is it batteries? That hydrogen fossil fuels? Maybe something I'm missing?

 
Ramya Swaminathan 

I think that's a great question. And I think that the increased investment activity in energy storage generally is a terrific story. And and that is occurring because of the massive disruption and I think you heard all my co panelists talk a little bit in their own ways about We're they see that disruption happening in energy markets worldwide, right? So you've got increased renewables penetration that is relentless not only because of policy mandates, to decarbonize or to increase renewables, but also because of the relentlessness of the economic justification, right. Renewable Energy, wind and solar, particularly in certain geographies are the cheapest form of energy. So I think you're going to see that increase and increase therefore, the issue of intermittency right, which grids have a really hard time dealing with you couple that with thermal retirement, traditional fossil assets are retiring and they're not being replaced by traditional fossil assets. They're being replaced by renewables, in many cases, in some cases, renewables plus storage. And then you add to that, and I think it was Janet, who was talking about EBS, right electrification of sectors that are not currently electrified and the amount of increased load growth that you're going to see as a result of that And I think what it results in is a massive disruption of energy infrastructure and the way that grids were conceptualized worldwide. And so in that context, what is the solution? Connor talked a little bit about that that can't happen without energy storage. The incumbent technology there, of course, is pumped hydro storage. 97 98% of the world's energy storage capacity today is pumped hydro storage. I'm actually a former pumped hydro storage developer. So you're going to hear no argument from me on the attractiveness of that technology. However, I think it's limited in scale. It's not today, looking forward going to provide the kind of capacity and solution that it did in the previous 100 years and previous 90 something years. And the more recent incumbent obviously, is lithium ion and all of us in this space obviously watched lithium ion very carefully. The declining cost curves are certainly something that is a very relevant data point from a competition standpoint. But I think you're also seeing the lens for customer value stacking start to expand beyond cost, right? So you're looking at the kinds of ancillary services that are being offered to grid operators, to large renewable IPS that are looking to time shift. And I think you're seeing the lens expand. So when you talk about competition, I'd say it's, you know, it's a complex story as it ought to be, because the problems we're trying to solve are very complex. So we certainly look at lithium ion, we look at other newcomers in this field. And I think that ultimately, energy storage fundamentally is going to be a bit of an all of the above solution. There's it's a big table in the context of global energy infrastructure transformation, and there's going to be space at the table for a lot of different storage technologies.

 
Sime Jurac 

Excellent. Can you talk a little bit more about this, who the target market is compared to pumped hydro lithium ion or maybe any Any other storage technologies and maybe barriers you're working to overcome?

 
Ramya Swaminathan 

Absolutely. So I think I'll start here just so you understand where I'm coming from with the obligatory sort of advertisement for Malta and our technology. So at its most basic level, what we're developing is a system that takes electric energy, electricity coming in from any source doesn't really matter. Its source agnostic. It converts that electricity into thermal energy. So on the front side and the charge cycle that looks like a heat pump. The best known example is the only thermodynamics joke I'll tell today. But the best known example of a heat pump I can give you would be like a refrigerator or an air conditioner. You take electric energy you separate hot from cold in your refrigerator the cold is pumped inside and insulated the hot is vented to the ambient. In a similar system, we use a heat pump to separate hot from cold. The hot side is stored in molten salt, which is a commercially mature technology used in the concentrate. solar industry on the cold side and commodity antifreeze fluids. And when the signal is received that the grid needs the electricity back that thermal energy is re converted to electric energy. So you have energy out the other side. So in terms of what is the value stacking, what is the value proposition to customers for a system like that, you know, you think about the basic problem of intermittency, obviously, all storage solutions seek to shift energy from a time where its marginal value is very low to a time where its marginal value is very high. But I'd also argue and what we at Malta see is the potential really to offer to the customer side the grid operators. In particular, the characteristics of a multi system really replicate a traditional fossil asset. You have rotating inertia because you've large spinning machinery, you've got the kinds of response times That really look like a gas simple cycle gas turbine. So in a world where you've got increased intermittency, and decreased fossil assets, the kind of value stacking that you can get from a thermal energy storage system, like multa is really a replacement for the gas assets across the system. And we see that as a really important part of the value stacking. But importantly, a new Titan regulation right. Importantly, storage across the board shares characteristics of systems. The old the energy grid of the past, had very strong red lines between generation assets, transmission assets, distribution assets, and storage crosses a lot of those lines. And in particular, when you look at a flexible asset like multo, where you're really looking at a charge module, a storage module and a discharge module, you're really able to decouple power from energy and charge from discharge. And that kind of flexibility I think requires a different way of thinking about the regulatory framework and value stacking. And that's one of the things that we'd like to see where you know it technological development is important. And it's absolutely essential. Lots of people working on a lot of different technologies, regulatory market development to accommodate the grid of the future, and to accommodate the kinds of flexibility that are coming from energy storage systems, distributed energy, etc, are absolutely essential as well.

 
Sime Jurac 

Okay, great. And then what's the biggest the the biggest things that need to change for your technology to be more broadly adopted in the market?

 
Ramya Swaminathan 

Yeah, so electricity is a very heavily regulated industry worldwide, and rightly so. And in that context, regulation really determines a lot of how companies that participate in electricity markets make money. It's and it's as true of on the utility side as it is on the IPP side as it is on the developer side as it is on the technical aside the technology development side. So I can give you two examples of regulation that policymakers and regulators, I believe are aware of in a variety of geographies worldwide, right. So one is what I just mentioned, which is that traditional bright lines between different asset classes are being eroded. And regulation needs to respond to that first order 841, passed unanimously by firk, you're in a bit ago, and that the ISOs are now reacting to the United States. orders that all forms of value brought to grids be recognized by the eyes, that's really important, because that speaks to value stacking. It's not done and it's not a system that yet appropriately values all of it, but we see the tail winds and the system changing. I'll give you another example where regulation can play a meaningful role for behind the meter installations. What you see is again, we we had a electricity system that was traditionally unidirectional fuel to the electricity system came in, in a way that was unrelated to the electricity system. It was cool. It was gas, it came through pipelines, it came on trucks, it came on barges. In a world where you have increased renewables and more storage, the electricity system is now being forced to be bi directional because the fuel for storage is itself electricity, right? So it's electricity and electricity out. And therefore, for behind the meter installations. A lot of times the charge electricity for the storage system is treated like a load right on the system. And the discharge electricity is treated at wholesale, which means you're underwater from minute one from the minute you discharge. And that is something that needs reform as well. That's true in a variety of geographies, as I said, it's certainly a part of regulatory change that I believe regulators in a variety of places are aware of, but we see that as a really meaningful change that needs to happen.

 
Sime Jurac 

Thank you, and how are you getting policymakers, utilities developers, I PPS and others really, you know, to implement the product.

 
Ramya Swaminathan 

Yeah. So funding baseline is it's about hearts and minds. Right. And and there, I think the fact that the the transformation and electricity markets worldwide is radical is on our side here, right. So a lot of times when we go into speak to customers, regulators, we're not starting at at telling them problems, they don't know. And electricity storage is not a nice to have, it's a need to have. And so the conversation starts from the point of what can we do to make this system accommodate changes that we all know need to be made? And that's a very constructive conversation.

 
Sime Jurac 

So in terms of markets, I mean, which do you see as most attractive today? Is it a state like California? Is it a country like Germany?

 
Ramya Swaminathan 

Yeah, well, you hit two good ones. Generally, it's a global market and we see pain everywhere. And pain in that context is our friend. Right? It's that that's the pain we're trying to solve, in some places that the the attractiveness of the market is being determined by policy changes. So where you have a mandate to be 100%, renewable, many places have a storage mandate California does New York does. Germany just announced earlier this year that they're going to be exiting cool in 20 years, right. So a lot of times policy changes that really don't have anything to do with storage particularly, really paved the way for a very attractive set of conditions for us to to be talking about the placement of our product. In many other places. It's not really driven by policy mandates. It's being driven by other needs like for resiliency, where you have a micro grid where you have a need to really create a system where one part of the grid goes down, you're not losing power everywhere in the grid. And I think people in California are realizing that from the the experience of pain, not Just the projection of pain. And so what we see is a global market with sort of pain in a variety of ways that we're really looking to deploy solutions to in the near term.

 
Sime Jurac 

Awesome. And I had one more question for each of the panelists, that they don't, you know, take a stab at answering and if we have some time, then would be happy to take a question or two from the audience. But to summarize what innovations are needed for you to be confident that renewables and low carbon forms of electricity generation are number one, implemented safely so Connor grid line of reliability, number two, cost effective and number three will actually make a difference in terms of decarbonisation efforts globally? Jenny, do you want to start it?

 
Janet Lin 

Sure, I guess quite simply, when I think of the innovation, it is really invention plus commercialization. And so it's not necessarily the inventions that we want to focus on. There's a lot going into that space, but it's the commercialization path and I think some of us I've already talked about that. Challenge. And so what we really want to focus on is to create that commercialization path, open up regulations to allow new technologies to fully participate, to be able to extract energy market revenues, for example.

 
Martin Powell 

Yeah, I think campuses, universities, small business operations, they could all put solar installations, building management systems and in an integrated way, I think we need to think about much more offshore wind, load growth is going to be an enormous factor. The world is electrifying itself, and America is no exception. So we need to generate more and more, I think, opening up the waters and also this very local solution is going to be key.

 
Conner Prochaska 

You know, at the department, as I mentioned, we're doing a ton of research across a multitude of different areas and we don't pick winners and losers as we talk about it. We want all of this stuff To be as successful as possible that we're investing research dollars into. But our number one responsibility is security and reliability, we need to make sure that as we transition down this path that we maintain, as I mentioned, cyber security is is is of the utmost importance. Every time I hear the word smart, I think vulnerable, and in, in, in stuff. And so as we move down the path, we need to make sure that the Department of Energy, we're doing the correct steps that we can through our cyber security office and through other opportunities to make sure it is safe, secure, and reliable and resilient. And and and as we move towards a more efficient and cleaner technologies as we've gone forward. That's what we want to aim for. And we're excited right now at the department. We're a net exporter of energy, we have more energy than we know what to do with which when the department was created in 1977. It was created because we didn't have enough energy to make the the the United States run. And that's because of innovation. Let's begin The technologies that we're talking about up here, it's in no small part due to natural gases as a bridge. And as we go forward, we want to make sure that we can do everything we can to keep us on this path because we're doing a great job.

 
Ramya Swaminathan 

I agree with what Janet said about, you know, the in the path to innovation and incorporating innovation relies on technological innovation and commercial pathways. And I think by far for the sector that I'm in the commercialization path is the one where I'd like to see folks really trying to balance the mandate of reliability, resiliency, safety, security, which kind of push us to a risk averse place. But simultaneously balancing that with an appropriate appreciation for the fact that solutions that worked in the past are not going to cut it for the future. And so what we really need is approaches that do not penalize new technologies for by virtue of their being new.

 
Sime Jurac 

Excellent. Thank you. I think we have a few minutes, we'll probably get to one question. But

 
Ramya Swaminathan 

I think it's going to be very important. And we're already seeing some commercial traction for that conversation, right? It used to be that ppas. And tenders were allowed as available, right? So if you're tendering to a PPA, and you just provide energy when it's available, well, aren't you a happy person, right? You provide the energy when it's there, you don't provide it when it's not and you go home happy, and the taker, the utility or the the National Grid has to take it whenever you provide it. We're all we're seeing a lot of pressure for load shaping and the provision of renewable energy. So you're seeing that kind of dual mandate of it must be renewable, but it must Hello this shape. And so the solution to that really lies in storage.

 
Martin Powell 

Just we're doing a pilot project in Brooklyn, where we put solar on 100 rooftops. And then that sits on a micro grid. And then we use a blockchain platform to transact between the hundred homes. So it's completely off grid, you don't have to export any access to the grid. So these kind of Island sites that can act on their own that they can share power between themselves are going to become increasingly important. And the utility should and do support these kinds of schemes because of the rapid increase in load requirements as as we urbanize as our cities got bigger. So if you want to know more about that, I'm very happy to share some information.

 
Janet Lin 

And as you walk through the CES exhibition floor, all of these demonstrations and systems need to be realized through the deployment of 5g networks and cloud edge data centers and there's going to be massive amount of load that's going to become into the grid that needs to be decarbonize or have battery backup, etc. So even predicting the future technology needs and how that's going to shape our electricity future as well.

 
Sime Jurac 

Excellent. Well, I think we're just out of time, but one more question. Yeah, if only one of the panelists dancers for now, right. Sure.

 
Speaker 

So, by directional charging, just not apprehensive philosophy for a second. Think of it the other way, the the enormity of story that we will have with.

 
Conner Prochaska 

Absolutely not even if that's how it came across. That's not it. You know, we're we're actually dedicating personnel within the Office of Technology transitions into running the traps on any potential issues with bi directional, we believe it's there's a great opportunity there. Our job is to be somewhat risk averse. Our job is to find out what the potential problems could be with this, what the vulnerabilities are going to be with this, so that all these great ideas can come to fruition in a safe and reliable manner. I mean, at the end of the day, that's, that's at the top of the list of what the US federal government's responsibility is, to the United States taxpayer is to make sure that, hey, there's a lot of great ideas, but we need to make sure everybody is safe sound, that we've got a reliable network, and that we're protecting this country. And so we take that with the utmost importance, and that's our job to make sure that we're paying attention to the unintended gamification of some of this amazing technology is an opportunity.

 
Sime Jurac 

Absolutely. Excellent. Well said, Thank you everybody and enjoy the rest of the show.

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