The Global Energy Prize Media contest recognizes the British: The Energy of Words goes to the journalist of The Economist
Transmitting power over thousands of kilometers requires a new electricity infrastructure, the winner of the International Media contest the Energy of Words -2017 Hal Hodson (Great Britain) is convinced. The Economist journalist`s article “Rise of the supergrid” was considered the best for the rigorous level of research, analytical insight and high standards of writing. The winner was chosen on April 14 in Moscow, Russia and will be awarded in June 2017 in St. Petersburg.
As a recall, the international media contest the Energy of Words was established in 2004 by the organizers of the Global Energy Prize. It recognizes mass media and journalists covering the most pivotal global energy issues and trends. The participants are from all around the world. More than 40 countries have already submitted around 650 of entries in different languages. This time the nominations for the Energy of Words came from four continents: starting from South Korea, Nepal, Pakistan, Kenya and Nigeria to Canada, Germany, and the USA. All the submitted materials were published in mass media between the 20 January 2016 till the 20 January 2017. The Global Energy Prize International Award Committee, consisting of 20 renowned scientists from 13 countries of the world, has chosen the winner.
“Notwithstanding the fact that the main prerogative of the Global Energy Association is related to the management of the eponymous international energy prize and support of research and innovations in the global energy field, the Energy of Words program is really important for us”, - shares the President of association Igor Lobovsky and clarifies. – “Renowned world experts have repeatedly noted that the Global Energy Prize helps to analyze world energy trends and shines spotlight on specific technologies that are being actively worked out by the best scientists of the world. The Global Energy Prize laureates and members of the Global Energy Prize International Award committee forecast the energy future with the help of foresight sessions. So current energy picture is really important for us. It would not be complete without its reflection in the mass media. Furthermore, since we accumulate publications about the energy filed from all over the world, this can serve as an interesting material for analyzing the situation in the industry”.
Responding to the current energy agenda, the material of the Energy of Words winner this year is devoted to the ways of transmitting electricity over long distances via supergrids (or long-distance ultra-high-voltage direct-current lines). The author notes that similar technologies are already used in Brazil, Europe, China, India and the United States. Such supergrids have a number of advantages over the AC power lines, but require considerable elaboration. It is noteworthy that the issue of interconnection of power grids of different countries has been in the energy agenda for a long time, such solutions are worked out in both European and Asian continents. In particular, the Asian Super Grid project (which should connect the electrical networks of Russia, China, Mongolia, South Korea and Japan in order to export clean energy from the Gobi desert in Mongolia) is especially discussed nowadays. However, according to Hal Hodson, such projects—which are transnational as well as transcontinental—carry risks beyond the merely technological. “To outsource a significant proportion of your electricity generation to a neighbor is to invest huge trust in that neighbor’s political stability and good faith. Earth’s wind-blasted and sun-scorched deserts can, if suitably wired up, provide humanity with a lot of clean, cheap power. The technology to do so is there. Whether the political will exists is the question” – summarizes Hal Hodson.
Note that the awarding of the Energy of Words winner is scheduled to be held within the Saint Petersburg International Economic Forum.