Path to 100% community of experts pursue innovative solutions for global renewable energy goals

Cities, states, and countries around the world are setting ambitious renewable energy targets, with the ultimate goal of 100% clean or renewable power. To succeed, they need to not only increase renewable generation, but also rapidly reduce the use of fossil fuels — and creating a plan to get there can be harder than it appears. That’s why today Wärtsilä is announcing their efforts to put together an international community of renewable energy experts, researchers, business leaders and journalists to power its Path to 100% initiative.

The Path to 100% seeks to discover solutions, raise awareness and create a dialogue on how to achieve an operationally and financially realistic approach to a 100% renewable energy future rooted in science, data and engineering.

“Each member of this community brings valuable expertise from their industry and their country that we can use to fuel our discussions as we strive for global solutions to 100% renewable power,” commented  Jussi Heikkinen, Director of Growth and Development, Wärtsilä Energy Business. “When we get these different subject matter experts talking about what they are passionate about, we can help policymakers and industry leaders find their optimal path to 100% which benefits the ratepayers as well as the environment we are striving to protect.”

Introduction to the Path to 100% Community of Experts

The Path to 100% Community of Experts consists of 30 members from different countries including Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Dominican Republic, Finland, Guatemala, the Netherlands and the United States. These subject matter experts exchange ideas and discuss innovative initiatives through periodic webinars designed to strengthen research partnerships. Community Expert information, blogs, interviews and research is posted on the Path to 100% website.


For more information, please contact:

Jussi Heikkinen
Director, Growth & Development, Americas
Wärtsilä Energy Business
Mob. +1 281 7714886
Jussi.heikkinen@wartsila.com
Tamara A. Rivera
Manager, Marketing & Communications, Americas
Wärtsilä Energy Business
Mob: +1 832 983 2129
tamara.rivera@wartsila.com

In California, A Push Grows to Turn Dead Trees into Biomass Energy

At-a-Glance

In 2018 alone, California wildfires released 45.5 million metric tons of carbon dioxide, more than half as much as the state’s industrial sector emits in a year.  Since, California has made reducing carbon emissions a top priority, the state has also embraced the use of thinning 1 million acres a year of live and dead trees. Biomass advocates regard this as a path toward forest resilience and carbon neutrality to reduce the extent and intensity of wildfires while also generating electricity.  To learn more, read this article in Yale Environment 360, titled “In California, A Push Grows to Turn Dead Trees into Biomass Energy”.

Key Takeaways

  • Drought, a warming climate, bark-beetle infestations and looming threats of intense wildfires has increased the number of biomass plants in California from 25 in the 1990’s to nearly 70 in 2020.
  • CalFire’s commitment to thinning a million acres a year is backed by $2 billion approved by the legislature.
  • Governor Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency, fast-tracking 35 high-priority logging and thinning projects in fire-prone communities.
  • The state aims to reduce carbon emissions to zero by 2045, in part by decreasing the amount of CO2 emitted by wildfires.

Path to 100% Perspective

Although this effort began as a way to remove dead trees and reduce the threat of intense wildfires, research and dialogue continues to improve the efficiency of converting biomass to fuels.  According to a report from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, the key to ensuring the growing amount of waste biomass does not further contribute to California’s carbon releases could mean converting the biomass into renewable biofuels or burning it using carbon capture and storage.