New report highlights the benefits and challenges of digital technologies for renewable energy financing

The website Renews.biz provides a news item about a new report from DNV GL about the benefits and challenges of digital technologies for renewable energy financing. There are important findings that you should appreciate. Interestingly, “despite the hype around blockchain, 40% of finance industry respondents said they were not using the technology at all.”

 

Digitalisation to impact renewables strategies

A new report from DNV GL has highlighted the benefits and challenges of digital technologies for renewable energy financing, beyond subsidies.

The testing and certification company surveyed nearly 2000 senior stakeholders from across the energy industry, with the results published in the ‘Digitalisation and the Future of Energy Finance’ report.

The survey found that with renewables projects increasingly exposed to the full volatility of the market by the phasing out of subsidies, financiers and developers are increasingly turning to digital technologies to better inform their assessment of the value and risk associated with projects.

Technologies, such as big data analytics, are being used to provide insight into optimised forecasting of asset performance, lifetime and generation levels.

According to the report’s findings, general reluctance to take advantage of new digital technologies is born out of a lack of clear revenue streams coming from the digital world with uncertainty about clear revenue which could be generated in the future.

A lack of senior level buy-in, and a lack of digital mindset was also highlighted in the survey as a bigger barrier to digitalisation in the finance industry compared to other sectors in the energy industry.

DNV GL found that while the benefits of digitalisation for the finance industry are growing, the unproven nature of new technologies and how to use them, coupled with a lack of digital mindset means the finance industry leaves itself open to disruption by new market players.

The survey highlighted the impact of blockchain, with 30% of finance respondents claiming that the technology is having an impact on their industry versus 15% across all energy respondents.

However, despite the hype around blockchain, 40% of finance industry respondents said they were not using the technology at all.

DNV GL vice president of technology and innovation, energy Lucy Craig said: “Digital technology and digitalisation are instrumental to ensure the returns that will drive continued investment in renewable energy, as market mechanisms evolve away from subsidies.

“But for investors to make their financing decisions with confidence, the finance industry needs to better understand both the risk and opportunity of new technologies and their long-term viability.

“By combining an open-minded approach to new technologies and an understanding of risk, the industry can take full advantage of the opportunities that digitalisation brings, for a profitable future.”

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