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Gemserv Predicts 2024

11th Jan, 2024

This is set to be a year of political change, as nearly 4 billion people around the world are scheduled to be voting in national elections. For a world already grappling with the continuing repercussions of the Ukraine-Russia and Israel-Hamas conflicts, the consequences could be profound, with fresh political leaders bringing new alliances and thinking on global issues, notably climate change.

The impacts of climate change are increasingly being experienced, with meteorologists declaring in advance of the end of 2023 that the year was on course to be the hottest on record. The need to decarbonise our energy systems and develop secure and resilient infrastructure and buildings is now urgent.

Technology, coupled with essential changes in consumer behaviour, has a vital part to play in helping us to address these and many other risks we face. But cyber attacks, data breaches and misuse of artificial intelligence continue to highlight the challenges of the digital landscape and technological evolution.  The other answer may lie in space, as one academic business paper writes this year about a new era where businesses could be looking to the tech way above our heads with innovation and major advances in data capture than can advance our knowledge and efficiencies across a broad range of areas from climate to agriculture and pharmaceuticals. Watch this space takes on a whole other meaning.

The influential changes and events of the past year are analysed here by our experts, who look ahead to how key sectors can prepare for 2024.

TOMORROW’S ENERGY ECONOMY

Last year we predicted that energy efficiency would finally get the attention it deserved, that demand-side flexibility would enter the mainstream and that new technologies, techniques, business models and consumer behaviours would emerge. This year’s predictions continue those themes:

  1. This is the year of energy efficiency
  2. Demand-side flexibility will continue to demonstrate its value
  3. Consumer behaviour becomes increasingly central to our future energy system

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Our Experts

  •  
    Miriam Atkin

    Director of Energy

  •  
    James Higgins

    Partner — Low Carbon

HYDROGEN

Against a backdrop of higher interest rates, higher oil prices and political uncertainty, 2023 was still a year of progress for hydrogen. Although there were some disheartening messages from companies and politicians on low-carbon technologies, the political foundations for hydrogen roll-out continued to be laid in the major economies of the world and the project pipeline continued to expand, especially in the UK which saw a raft of much anticipated policy and project announcements.

The Energy Act passed into law and the 11 projects that will go ahead under the electrolytic were selected, securing a weighted average strike price between them of £241/MWh. However, this will be perhaps the most crucial year yet for the global hydrogen economy, determining the pace at which it materializes. Our predictions are:

  1. Firm capacity will expand as many projects globally undertake final investment decisions (FID)
  2. The US election could change the shape of the global hydrogen economy
  3. To enable projects reaching FID, massive investment in supply chains will be needed

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Our Experts

  •  
    Harry Morton

    Principal Consultant – Hydrogen

  •  
    Clare Jackson

    Head of Innovation

DATA PROTECTION

In the past we have noted the ups and downs in the progress of new UK legislation for data protection. Our key areas to watch, therefore, are:

  1. The Data Protection and Digital Information Bill is on the way
  2. Organisations will look to release the value in AI
  3. Interest set to grow in data protection codes

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Our Expert

  •  
    Camilla Winlo

    Head of Data Privacy

CYBER SECURITY

In 2024, robust cyber security and adaptability in the digital landscape will be paramount.

Our predictions are:

  1. The IoT is continuing to evolve – and so too are the risks
  2. Cloud-based attacks present a growing threat in the digital age
  3. Organisations need to focus on the shifting landscape of remote work security

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Our Experts

  •  
    Ian Hirst

    Partner – Cyber Threat Services

  •  
    Ian Rutland

    Head of Cyber Security

  •  
    Ian Davis

    Head of Information Security

DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION

The new year brings the prospect of fresh challenges around data, regulation and skills, leading us to predict:

  1. We are entering a new paradigm for data
  2. Regulation 2.0 is coming
  3. Organisations will approach upskilling differently, with workforces becoming transformers

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Our Expert

  •  
    Vincenzo Rampulla

    Principal Consultant – Digital Transformation

Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG)

Much has happened in the environmental, social and governance (ESG) space in 2023 that will influence 2024, and three-year business planning. Our predictions are:

  1. The rubber is hitting the road when it comes to business strategy and operational impacts
  2. Data and compliance challenges are mounting
  3. A multi-speed regulatory environment could widen the disparity in social and environmental progress

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Our Experts

  •  
    Waco Yokoyama

    Low Carbon Consultant

  •  
    Richard Hilson

    Principal Consultant – ESG

Authors

Miriam Atkin

Director of Energy

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James Higgins

Low Carbon Partner

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Clare Jackson

Head of Innovation - Low Carbon

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Harry Morton

Principal Consultant - Hydrogen

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Camilla Winlo

Head of Data Privacy

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Ian Hirst

Partner, Cyber Threat Services

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Ian Rutland

Head of Cyber Security

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Ian Davis

Head of Information Security

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Matthew Stevens

Assistant-lead, Cyber Threat Services

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Richard Hilson

Principal Consultant

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