Finding the lowest cost options to abate emissions
The International Energy Agency considers energy efficiency to be the “first fuel” because reducing the amount of energy needed to meet society’s needs is one of the most effective means by which to reduce emissions. Transportation is currently a major contributor to global greenhouse gas emissions. Renewable energy technologies can reduce demand for fossil fuel powered transportation, but a number of challenges will need to be resolved in order to achieve efficient, cost-effective low-emissions transport at a global scale, especially in the case long distance shipping. Another key challenge in this space relates to ‘embodied’ emissions – emissions associated with the production of many of the products that we use. Modern society is built on steel, cement, ammonia, and plastic, which have high embodied emissions and are used in the construction industry at large-scale.
The NZI is developing new production methods that will increase energy efficiency and reduce emissions associated with low- and net-zero emissions transport, construction and product manufacture. They are also exploring ways to utilise materials that would otherwise be thrown away.
The NZI’s research efforts to avoid emissions by reducing energy demand are focused on the following research pillars: