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Costs are going up, supply chains are facing major disruptions, and experienced workers are leaving the manufacturing industry. Yet Microsoft’s Patrik Sjöstedt, who leads Microsoft’s business for Manufacturing & Supply Chain Industry Solutions in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, sees a silver lining:

“There are many tactics to address these challenges,” Sjöstedt said. “Classic cost reduction and lean manufacturing initiatives can help improve efficiencies and quality while reducing waste.”

Read Sjöstedt’s thoughts on how manufacturing companies can use data from more and more connected devices to build a “digital backbone” to support their digitalizations efforts.

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Global blackouts: War, extreme weather, supply chain disruptions, and the pandemic have hit energy markets around the world hard, putting economies and even lives at risk. 

 

Count on technology: An analysis by Accenture, in collaboration with the World Economic Forum, found that digital solutions can reduce global emissions by 20% by 2050. 

 

Davos 2022: According to the International Monetary Fund, the global economy faces its “biggest test since WWII.”

 

Cyber cooperation: Major energy companies and industrial cybersecurity firms have made collective pledges on global approaches to boosting cyber resilience

 

Demystifying ESG: The US Securities and Exchange Commission announced two rules to prevent misleading or deceptive claims about ESG investing. 

 

Continued growth for EVs: Sales of electric cars doubled in 2021 to a new record of 6.6 million. According to a recent report by IEA, sales have continued their growth in 2022 despite supply chain disruptions. 

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This month, Ignite News is featuring three companies with big ideas and big goals for this decade. Moonshot or not? You decide.

Scatec CEO Terje Pilskog is focused on continuing the company’s bold mission to bring cleaner, greener power to places where the energy gap persists.

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Emmanuel Macron wins France’s presidential election: After defeating rival Marine Le Pen, Macron now has an opportunity to not only transform France, but to shape Europe’s future.

More supply chain disruptions: Recent covid-related shutdowns in Shanghai are heaping more pressure on global supply chains.

The war in Ukraine rages on: The World Bank announced that the war “will mean high food and energy prices for three years”, the biggest commodity shock since the 1970s.

China lags behind on promises on climate: Officials in China have approved plans to build more coal-fired power to inject money into the economy and revive growth.

The US needs stronger power grids: A new federal proposal would require transmission providers to develop bigger, stronger, and smarter grids to support the energy transition.

Climate change in action: Due to decades-long drought combined with abundant dry vegetation, the American Southwest is facing another challenging year with wildfires.

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Paula Doyle, senior vice president of Energy at Cognite, looks back at this month’s big energy industry event.

Like we didn’t have enough to talk about already.

I traveled to Houston earlier this month with high expectations. The stage was set for the first in-person CERAWeek in three years. Big names and even bigger topics: the energy transition, the post-pandemic economic boom, Europe’s energy crisis. All of this and more was on the agenda.

The war in Ukraine changed all of that. Overnight, the war exposed the fragility and instability of our energy system and injected fresh insecurity into global markets. Everything we had planned to talk about in Houston had to be reframed.

Looking back at CERAWeek this year, I see a few key takeaways that stand out:

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Supply chains will never be the same: The Ukraine-Russia war could permanently reshape global supply chains. Fast Company explains why.

In fact, the war has created the greatest global food crisis since World War II: France’s ambassador to the UN, Nicolas de Rivière, said “Russia’s aggression against Ukraine is increasing the risk of famine around the world” and that populations in developing countries would be the first to be affected.

CO2 emissions peaked in 2021: Global CO2 emissions reached the highest level in history in 2021, as the world bounced back from the pandemic, according to an analysis by the IEA.

‘Mixed bag’ of data: The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has proposed a plan that would require all public companies to provide uniform, comparable disclosures on climate risk.

Data is the barrier: Most CFOs and executives in the US say that proper access to reliable data is the main hurdle in ESG reporting, a survey by Deloitte found.

US-EU energy cooperation: This month, the US and the European Commission announced a strategic energy cooperation to strength Europe’s energy security and reduce the continent’s dependence on Russia’s fossil fuels.

Ukraine, Moldova plug in to Europe: The electricity grids of Ukraine and Moldova have been successfully synchronized with the Continental European Grid. Engineers accomplished “a year’s work in two weeks,” according to Kadri Simson, the European Union’s Commissioner for Energy.

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