Strengthening international collaboration is a priority for the UK to deliver our domestic climate and energy targets and is also a key goal of our COP26 Presidency. COP26 President Designate Alok Sharma recently emphasised that collaboration will be essential to deliver the rapid structural change across the entire global economy and keep 1.5 degrees in reach. He highlighted:
“This is not a matter of shouldering a burden between us, but of sharing an opportunity. The move to a clean economy benefits us all: through creating jobs, spurring sustainable development, and cleaning up our air.”
The UK recognises the importance of strengthened collaboration on innovation and we view Mission Innovation as the primary forum to work with other countries committed to accelerate clean energy innovation. Over the next phase the UK will continue to take an international leadership role. In addition to the specific initiatives below, the UK will engage with other members as new missions and initiatives are proposed to support their development and actively engage where of national interest.
The UK is co-leading the Power Mission with Italy and China in collaboration with participating MI members. The UK is leading the Systems Integration, Data and Digitalisation Pillar, driving innovation efforts in the areas of data standards and interoperability, secure digitalised systems and integrated data platforms. The UK will work closely with other Mission co-leads and coalition members to: (1) develop large-scale demonstration projects (~10-100MW) and smaller pilot projects demonstrating innovative solutions to achieve the Mission’s goal of integrating up to 100% Variable Renewable Energy in the grid securely and efficiently and, (2) create and capitalise on the significant opportunities for sharing knowledge, expertise and best practices to foster capacity building. As co-lead, the UK will contribute resources to the Mission team to support coordination of activities and provide strategic leadership through the Executive Committee.
The UK is co-leading the Hydrogen Mission with Australia, Chile and the European Commission. The UK will look to lead the strategy and international activities of the Mission’s research and development pillar. As the Mission’s commitments set out, the UK will develop at least three hydrogen valleys, support investment in RD&D across the hydrogen value chain and facilitate knowledge-sharing between UK experts and participating MI members’ networks. The UK will continue to support increased coordination between different international hydrogen initiatives, particularly with the Clean Energy Ministerial. The UK will contribute to the Hydrogen Mission’s coordination team and through the Mission’s Steering Committee.
As a confirmed core member of the shipping mission, the UK will collaborate with other Mission participants on pushing towards making international shipping emission-free. The Mission is structured around three pillars: the ship, the fuel and the infrastructure, all of which need to work in tandem for zero-emissions international shipping to become commercially viable at scale. The Mission aims to collaborate with existing maritime decarbonisation initiatives, such as the Getting to Zero coalition, while adding value in building a public-private platform for cooperation. In addition to contributing actively to achieving the Mission objectives, the UK will be a member of the steering committee of the Mission.
Innovation Community on Affordable Heating and Cooling of Buildings
The UK will co-lead the re-launched innovation community with the European Commission and India. The vision is to be the global ‘innovation community’ on low carbon affordable heating and cooling of buildings to strengthen the clean energy innovation ecosystem and to facilitate new partnerships and collaborations accelerating innovation and providing pathways to net zero. We will connect with other collaborations, leveraging additional benefits (e.g., Race to Zero, the Cool Coalition, Horizon Europe European Partnerships, Positive Energy Districts, etc.). The UK intends to build on the Global Cooling Prize and the significant international engagement it created to plan new competitions and accelerate R&D in this area – leveraging existing funding through UKRI. We will also engage with industry accelerating private investment in delivering significant innovation and impact across the international heating and cooling space. The innovation activities will support the development of National Cooling Action Plans and will actively contribute to the innovation projects of the MI Missions i.e. Hydrogen, Power.