- 23 national governments and the EU commit to deliver 221 demonstration projects to accelerate clean energy technologies this decade, as part of the Mission Innovation initiative.
- Projects could unlock $90bn of public-private funding to decarbonise global energy systems by 2050.
- Major new programmes include demonstrating technologies to integrate 80% renewable energy; decarbonise heavy industry; and boost the global green hydrogen economy.
- Follows new analysis showing the world remains off track to meet global climate goals, with greater cooperation required to develop and deploy essential technologies.
PITTSBURGH, 23 September – 23 national governments and the EU, collaborating through Mission Innovation (MI), today announced that they will coordinate to deliver 221 demonstration projects globally this decade to accelerate clean energy technologies in the hardest to abate sectors.
The announcement, made at the 7th MI ministerial meeting in Pittsburgh, will drive public-private investment in technologies which need to be commercialised by 2030, including: at least 50 large-scale demonstration projects to decarbonise energy-intensive industries like steel, cement and chemicals; five projects on five continents to demonstrate the integration of up to 80% renewable energy into energy grids; and the identification of 100 ‘hydrogen valleys’ worldwide. The goal is to achieve tipping points in cost by 2030 to accelerate the delivery of technologies to decarbonise sectors responsible for more than 52% of global greenhouse gas emissions.
Driving innovation in critical sectors
These demonstration projects are a direct response to analysis by the International Energy Agency that at least $90 billion of public funding is required by 2026 to demonstrate technologies necessary to decarbonise global energy systems, such as renewables, battery storage, and hydrogen-based fuels. This is contingent on international coordination to prove solutions quickly at scale in multiple configurations and in various regional contexts. These technologies must be commercially viable by 2030 to be deployed at scale to achieve net zero by 2050 (a target that has now been adopted by 104 countries).
Mission Innovation is the leading global initiative to catalyse public-private coordination of research, development and the demonstration of clean energy technologies. Its seven ‘Missions’ facilitate high ambition alliances between countries, corporations, investors and research institutes to reach ambitious climate goals by 2030 and make sure more innovation happens, more rapidly. Together they provide the mechanism to drive international collaboration and coordination, allowing governments to work together and with the private sector to target investment and action.
The plans announced today include:
- Net-Zero Industries Mission: at least 50 large-scale demonstration projects to decarbonise energy-intensive industries such as steel, cement and chemicals by 2030 to facilitate the full decarbonisation of industry in multiple regions of the world by 2050.
- Green Powered Future Mission: five continental demonstrators integrating up to 80% Variable Renewable Energy into existing electricity grids by 2024. After 2024, the programme will target the integration of up to 100% renewable energy.
- Clean Hydrogen Mission: 100 Clean Hydrogen Valleys identified by 2024, to demonstrate innovative hydrogen value chains and build scale for different end-use sectors, driving down the cost of clean hydrogen. This could stimulate USD $90 billion of public-private investment and significant clean hydrogen capacity.
- Carbon Dioxide Removal Mission: six countries commit to funding at least one project that removes 1,000+ metric tons of CO2 per year by 2025. Participating countries will contribute to a collective goal of $100 million for CDR demonstrations by 2025.
- Zero-Emission Shipping Mission: the creation of a blueprint for zero emission refuelling ports for global shipping by 2024, accelerating progress towards the development of 10 large trade ports across three continents along the major deep-sea shipping routes supplying zero-emission fuels by 2030.
- Urban Transitions Mission: establishment of a first cohort of 50 cities – expanded to 300 by 2024 – who will take a leading role in delivering net zero.
Through collaboration with the IEA and IRENA, progress will be tracked annually to ensure accountability and transparency.
Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission said: “Research and innovation will propel the clean energy transition that is more needed than ever. Together with our EU Member States, we expect “Team Europe” to make a leading contribution to our shared ambition of investing more, faster and bolder in breakthrough energy innovation demonstration projects.”
John Kerry, US Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, said: “The need for energy that is clean, secure, reliable, and affordable has never been greater. To deploy clean energy technologies at the scale and pace required to avoid the worst consequences of the climate crisis, we need swift and coordinated action from world leaders. Mission Innovation has a critical role to play in achieving our collective climate and clean energy goals by facilitating the international collaboration required to maximize these investments and accelerate clean energy research, development, and demonstration.”
Dr Fatih Birol, Executive Director of the International Energy Agency, said: “There are promising signs that today’s energy crisis is speeding up clean energy technology progress, and could catalyse the transition to a more sustainable and secure energy system. Stronger international collaboration through MI, with its focus on key emitting sectors, will be truly important. The IEA will continue to support MI across all its endeavours.”
Stimulating international co-operation
The announcement comes as a major global report, by the UNFCCC Climate Champions, the International Renewable Energy Agency and the IEA, found that the world remains off track to meet global climate goals and that greater international cooperation and coordination is needed to rapidly develop and deploy the technologies needed. Mission Innovation’s 24 members, including the US, China, India, UK and European Commission, represent 95% of global public investment in clean energy innovation and their collective investments and collaboration will significantly accelerate the innovation needed to demonstrate and scale clean technologies.
The rapid demonstration of technologies to decarbonise global energy systems plays a crucial role in tackling the climate crisis and long-term energy price volatility. For example, as the cost of renewables continues to fall, technologies to enable the integration of high levels of renewable energy into electricity grids are vital to ensure that national supplies are not exposed to future price shocks. Alternative fuels such as hydrogen have been identified as essential to drive long-term emissions reductions across energy-intensive sectors such as steel, cement and chemicals, dramatically reducing the need for fossil fuels and exposure to future fluctuating prices.
The economic opportunity is enormous – accelerating clean energy innovation this decade can further support value chains worth $1.5 trillion and support 16 million jobs in 2050. The European Union RePowerEU programme, announced in March to rapidly reduce dependence on fossil fuels and fast forward the green transition, and the US Inflation Reduction Act, passed in August, issued a clear wake-up call on the importance of government support to accelerate investment and innovation to scale clean energy technologies and create secure and affordable energy systems, while boosting jobs and growth.
Mike Boots, Executive Vice President, Breakthrough Energy, said: “Building a prosperous, net-zero future will require unprecedented collaboration across sectors and borders – and Mission Innovation provides a critical platform for fostering this global collective effort. Through close partnership, businesses, governments, and innovators can unlock the investment needed to make clean energy solutions affordable and accessible to communities around the world.”
Drew Leyburne, Chair of the MI Steering Committee, said: “To achieve a global clean energy transition, we need to discover, innovate, and scale new clean energy solutions at an unprecedented pace. Mission Innovation supports this as a key platform bringing together governments, companies, and innovators determined to take collaborative action that will advance progress towards the Paris Agreement goals and accelerate pathways towards global net-zero emissions.”
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Notes to editors
Chris Bowen MP, Australian Minister for Climate Change and Energy, said: “The Net Zero Industries Mission will accelerate the development and deployment of emissions reduction technologies in industry, crucial to reaching net zero by 2050. We are excited to co-lead this Mission and work together with our international partners. Australia brings to the Mission world-leading expertise from researchers and private sector in renewable energy and industry innovation.”
Leonore Gewessler, Austrian Minister for Climate Action, Environment, Energy, Mobility, Innovation and Technology, said: “The development and accelerated deployment of breakthrough technologies are prerequisites for decarbonizing heavy industry and for achieving climate neutrality. I am delighted that, together with Australia as co-lead, alongside a significant number of Mission Innovation members, we will be working together to make the Net-Zero Industries Mission possible”.
David M. Turk, Deputy Secretary, U.S. Department of Energy, said: “The U.S. is committed to lowering our carbon footprint across all transportation sectors, including maritime, and is proud to be co-leading the Mission Innovation: Zero Emissions Shipping Mission to see demonstrations of zero-emission ships on the water by 2030. Today, we are very excited to share the Shipping Mission’s Action Plan, which outlines the actions and projects needed to meet that goal and to help tackle the climate crisis.”
Simon Kollerup, Danish Minister for Industry, Business, and Financial Affairs and Dan Jørgensen, Danish Minister for Climate, Energy and Utilities, said: “Denmark is a large shipping nation and an advocate for urgent climate action. That is why we have taken lead in the Zero-Emission Shipping Mission to make sure that the decarbonisation of shipping is accelerated through global action. I am looking forward to seeing how our international public-private partnership will deliver concrete actions. Changing the course for international shipping to a green and sustainable future will be a win-win for people and the planet and with great possibilities for businesses across the globe.”
The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Natural Resources Canada, said: “Climate change is the most urgent challenge, and the greatest opportunity, of our time. Carbon Dioxide Removal is widely recognized as necessary to achieve global climate ambitions, and Canadian companies are at the forefront of this burgeoning industry. That’s why Canada’s participation in the Carbon Dioxide Removal (CDR) Launchpad is so important, accelerating the demonstration of CDR technologies while supporting Canadian innovators. With our leading clean technology sector and skilled workforce, and as a founding member of Mission Innovation, Canada is eager to advance the global effort towards lower emissions and fight climate change.”
Terje Aasland, Minister of Petroleum and Energy and Espen Barth Eide, Minister of Climate and Environment, said: “As co-lead of the Mission and a leading nation in green shipping, Norway is proud to support the Action Plan for the Zero Emission Shipping Mission. The Action Plan will strengthen international collaboration across the maritime value chain for fuel production, fuel infrastructure and ships. It will be fundamental in realizing the mission’s zero-emission goals.”
Frans Timmermans, Vice President of the European Commission, said: “Whether in Europe, the Americas or elsewhere: cities around the world already feel the impact of the climate and biodiversity crises. The Urban Transitions Mission will support them and help accelerate their efforts towards a green, clean, and healthy future for all their citizens.”
H.E. Diana Morant Ripoll, Minister of Science and Innovation, Spain, said: “Innovation in the energy sector is crucial to achieving climate neutrality. Mission Innovation 2.0 offers great potential for the transformation of clean energy in this decade and Spain through its adhesion will accelerate the adoption of solutions that achieve affordable, accessible and attractive clean energy for all.”
Gregor Robertson, Global Ambassador for the Global Covenant of Mayors, said: “Urban research and innovation can rapidly accelerate cities’ response to the climate crisis. The Urban Transitions Mission is mobilizing innovative solutions in pursuit of climate neutral and resilient futures for our cities by bringing together local leaders with national governments, academia, civil society and the private sector.”
Giorgia Rambelli, Director of the Urban Transitions Mission, said: “Collaboration and holistic responses are our best way of winning the fight against climate change. The Urban Transitions Mission provides a critical platform for national, city, business, and research leaders to come together to share first-class resources, financing, and tools to address urban climate challenges and safeguard climate-resiliency for people globally.”
Gim Huay Neo Managing Director, Centre for Nature and Climate, World Economic Forum, said: “The World Economic Forum works closely with Mission Innovation to mobilize public-private action to address the climate crisis. Together, we seek to accelerate clean energy innovation in the hard-to-abate industries while deploying, scaling and bringing down costs for low carbon emitting technologies.”
Graham Stuart MP, UK Minister of State for Climate, said: “New technologies and innovation are vital in securing our energy supplies and keeping prices affordable, both at home and abroad. The UK is pleased to support President Biden’s clean technology challenge, pledging over £1.5 billion to help scale up hydrogen production and advanced nuclear, as well as expanding renewables and energy storage. Human ingenuity is our strongest asset in dealing with the challenges of energy security and fighting climate change.”
Mohamed Sefiani, Mayor of Chefchaouen (Morocco) & GCoM Regional Ambassador, said: “Despite limited resources and competing priorities, mayors around the world are pushing forward innovative solutions to secure jobs, drive economic development, and deliver climate-resilient communities for urban residents. It’s time we unlock the necessary support and tools to accelerate city climate progress and propel the world into a net-zero future.”
Jules Kortenhorst, CEO, RMI, said: “RMI is at the intersection of accelerating clean energy innovation and deployment with active engagement from the private sector, where Mission Innovation’s leadership is essential. This is an historic moment for industry to capitalize on global cooperation and investments.”
- Mission Innovation Missions focus on the biggest global challenges: power systems, hydrogen, shipping, urban decarbonisation, biorefineries, carbon dioxide removal and net-zero industries. Together they have the potential to unlock affordable decarbonisation for sectors responsible for more than half of emissions.
- The first Missions on power systems, shipping and hydrogen were launched in May 2021. Missions on urban decarbonisation and carbon dioxide removal were launched at COP26, and the Mission on biorefineries in April 2022.
- The Net-Zero Industries Mission launches on 23 September at the Global Clean Energy Action Forum in Pittsburgh.
About Mission Innovation
Mission Innovation is a global initiative to catalyse action and investment in research, development and demonstration to make clean energy affordable, attractive and accessible to all this decade. This will accelerate progress towards the Paris Agreement goals and pathways to net zero.
Mission Innovation brings together governments, public authorities, corporates, investors and academia to enable widely affordable clean energy globally and achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement.
Mission Innovation is the main political and action platform addressing clean energy innovation. Its members represent over 95% of global public investments in clean energy innovation and are committing to sustaining and, wherever possible, increasing their investment in clean energy innovation this decade.
The 24 members of Mission Innovation are: Austria, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Morocco, the Netherlands, Norway, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Sweden, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, the United States of America, and the European Commission (on behalf of the European Union).
 According to research by Vivid Economics https://www.climateworks.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/GINAs-Energy-and-land-use-synthesis-report-10-12-21.pdf