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Digital and electric combined together are the path to smart and green: Jean-Pascal Tricoire, Chairman Schneider Electric


Climate change remains a true challenge for humanity even as its focus has shifted to recovering from the Covid-19 pandemic and the ensuing recession, said Jean-Pascal Tricoire, chairman, Schneider Electric. To overcome this challenge, electricity and digital will be the key pillars, Tricoire said at the Economic Times Global Business Summit. “Digital and electric combined together are the path to smart and green,” he said.

Climate change is mostly about carbon emissions, he said, which in turn mostly pertains to how we produce and consume energy. As many as two billion people today do not have access to decent energy. To provide energy to all while also reducing carbon emissions by half, efficiency has to improve by a factor of four for all human activities, said Tricoire. That is the equation of sustainability, he said. Digital technologies are the solution to this equation, he said, adding that more than a third of the applications of 5G technology are efficiency related. Digital technologies will help improve efficiency in buildings by more than 30% by 2040.

Meanwhile, the share of electricity in our energy consumption mix needs to go up to more than 40% in the next 20 years from about 20% today, according to Tricoire. At the same time, renewable generation of electricity must increase by a factor of six during this period, he said. Schneider Electric is investing in smart buildings, smart cities, efficient data centres, wastewater management and other similar digital solutions through its EcoStruxure platform to improve digitalisation and electrification, said the French company’s chairman. “Our purpose is to empower all to make the most of our energy and resources, bridging progress and sustainability for all,” he said.

The €57.6 billion (Rs 4.9 lakh crore) energy and automation solutions company recently completed the acquisition of the Electrical and Automation business division of L&T for Rs 14,000 crore in an all-cash deal. In India, the company’s technology manages the water supply and sanitation infrastructure at the Atal Nagar and Dholera smart cities in Chhattisgarh and Gujarat, respectively. The company’s system also manages city traffic and lighting. At Atal Nagar, the company has integrated every building onto its software platform to transparently provide information about resource consumption, said Tricoire.

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