Get to know our members and what being part of the ETC means to them. We are pleased to share an exclusive interview with Manya Ranjan, Senior Vice President, Head of Corporate Strategy at ReNew Power.
- What drew your organisation to join the ETC?
ETC as a global platform brings together the brightest minds from among the energy practitioners, academia and thought leaders. ETC produces high quality evidence and insights to shape the global climate policy. ReNew has been a market leader in the clean energy space. We have been shaping the energy transition story and actively promoting the dialogue around it. The ETC platform, with more than 50 members from across sectors ranging from energy to finance, is the right partnership to further build upon our thought leadership. With energy transition becoming the central theme in the world, the type of synergy from ReNew and ETC partnership can and should be leveraged by multiple organisations.
- What do you see as the ETC’s most impactful achievement since you’ve been a Commissioner/Representative?
In recent times, policy advocacy for climate change has become stronger across the world; ETC’s work has been adding positive impetus here. ETC’s analytical insights and regular dialogues among its members have helped influence fast-tracking of policies, particularly prominent are European Union’s climate policies in recent years. As ETC is augmenting its regional coverage, their work in India, in collaboration with The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), has significantly helped in advocating for concrete regulatory changes for energy transition. India has recently unveiled its strategy roadmap to become net zero by 2070. ETC’s research paper “Roadmap to India’s 2030 decarbonisation target” helps to strengthen India’s resolve to achieve net zero targets.
One of the most notable achievements of the platform, has been their Mission Possible Partnership (MPP) initiative. MPP focuses on transformation of hard-to-abate sectors and providing fact-based solutions and transition strategies for decarbonisation of high-emitting industries in the coming decade itself. This is a powerful approach toward achieving comprehensive energy transition across value chain. MPP’s partnerships with organisations such as the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) will further aid in obtaining concrete guidance by industries such as cement, aluminium, steel and shipping.
- What do you see as the biggest obstacle on the journey to net-zero?
Net zero targets are ambitious but achievable with concrete policy measures. However, there are still some challenges to the journey. Implementation of net zero plans depend on multiple factors, such as financing, policy support, resources. Broadly, I can categorise the obstacles under ‘affordability’, ‘sustainability’ and ‘energy resilience’.
Transition requires focusing not only on CO2 emissions but ensuring economic development and inclusive growth. Investors and all stakeholders need concerted efforts to mitigating social consequences of far-reaching changes. Integrating a ‘just transition’ factor into decisions can help maximise the social and economic opportunities of climate action, leading to mitigating the challenge of ‘affordability’. Secondly, a ‘sustainable’ solution needs transition of the entire value chain – including the greening of hard-to-abate sectors. However, green solutions such as green hydrogen and battery storages are yet to overcome the cost parity issues. Another major challenge we have been witnessing is the puzzle of energy resilience. The question of resilience has gained much momentum in this year itself, post the geopolitical tensions and Russia-Ukraine war. Without greater visibility and control over critical resources, a transition can become complicated.
- What are the key milestones you see in the road to net-zero, and why?
The urgency of a just transition to a sustainable green economy is more prominent now than ever. Distinct changes in our approach over the next coming years, would show us our progress toward the net-zero journey.
I believe, an immediate milestone would be that by 2025, the debate around net-zero has ceased to exist, and we have established the importance of it. We collectively move on from ‘what’ is net-zero to how to achieve it. The only debate from then on should be ‘how’ we are going on this journey. Second milestone would be that by 2030, we have made a sizeable dent in the entire issue, and see concrete, measurable changes in the world around us. An IEA study suggests multiple success factors for each decade of decarbonisation. Some of the prominent estimated 2030 targets are, universal energy access, reducing annual emissions to 23 Gt, 60% car sales being electric, more than 10% aviation fuels to be low-emissions, among others.
If we sustainably reach the 2025 and 2030 targets, then we will be in a good place for meeting all our ambitious but achievable targets.
- What is the one necessary change you feel most personally passionate about in the transition journey?
Consumer centricity will need to improve manifold for energy businesses to effectively support different types of consumers in their own transition journeys. This is a step change for businesses in the traditional energy space and will need new products and services to be offered to meet the evolving and specific needs, leveraging data and new technologies like Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, and through building wider ranging relationships with the customers.