Infrastructure for the Net Zero Society
The European ambition to become the world’s first climate neutral continent by 2050 was presented by the European Commission in December 2019, with a package of measures and policies in the European Green Deal. In the UK, the goal of Net Zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 was already signed into law by June 2019. Whereas the goal to be accomplished is clear, it is far from clear yet how to get to the desired state of Net Zero. It is evident that Net Zero will require fundamental change in the world of infrastructure. Yet, what is the next generation energy and transport infrastructure that will serve the Net Zero society of the future? How will it affect other infrastructure sectors? And how will it change the way we lead our lives? Considering the long lead times for new infrastructure planning and construction, the challenge is urgent. Action is needed before all the answers are clear. Which are the no-regret investment options available today? In the midst of overwhelming uncertainties about technological innovations, economic stability and geopolitical volatility, how can governments provide sufficient long-term certainty to elicit the right investments today and tomorrow? How can they ensure that the infrastructure system transformation towards Net Zero benefits all citizens, including principles of social justice, transparency and legitimacy in the future Net Zero society?