For the Hanze University of Applied Sciences, energy is one of three primary areas of focus in educational courses and research. The university offers several masters and minors that specialize in energy-related topics. The first year students of our Energy master's programmes got an introduction into the field of energy during the Energy Kick Start Week.
Among other things, they attended a meeting with Mrs. Nienke Homan, politician and Regional Minister at the Province of Groningen, with responsibilities in energy transition, regional energy strategies, climate (climate adaptation and mitigation), water policies, National Programme Groningen, and South-East Groningen.
Mrs. Nienke Homan, in a dialogue with Dr Beata Kviatek, senior lecturer at the master’s programme Energy for Society and researcher at EnTranCe, talked to students about political aspects of energy transition. Political aspects of energy transition is one of the six topics that were discussed in the PESTEL mini lectures during the Energy Kick Start week.
The session started with a question about the role of the letter “P”, which stands for “political”, in the energy transition process. According to Mrs. Nienke Homan, governments have an important role of setting goals and giving directions to the energy transition. Moreover, governmental decisions can facilitate energy transition by creating a favorable regulatory environment. At the same time, governments are responsible to ensure energy access to all inhabitants.
When asked by Dr Beata Kviatek, what has been done in practice to facilitate energy transition in the North of the Netherlands, Mrs. Nienke Homan talked about the common effort of two northern Dutch regions, Groningen and Drenthe, in cooperation with many regional and national businesses, to develop a “hydrogen valley” that would become an example of green hydrogen economy to be followed by others in Europe and beyond.
Does Mrs. Nienke Homan think that the letter “P” is the most important letter of the PESTEL model for the energy transition process? Well, you may know the answer already: she does, but, according to Mrs. Nienke Homan, the letter “P” is not only the most important, it is also one requiring the highest responsibility. However, adds Dr Beata Kviatek, responsibility is not only for politicians, we all should be responsible for making a change.
On the program Tuesday morning 1 September, a lecture by Jan-jaap Aué, director EnTranCe | Center of Expertise Energy and lecturer Hydrogen applications and Dr. Klaas Jan Noorman on energy transition from a consultant’s perspective. Because we could not give the students a tour of EnTranCe Joline Teisman and Marloes Nieuwenhuis, students of the Energy for Society master’s program, recorded a film three weeks ago in which they show us as viewers the testing ground location. Are you curious? Watch the video tour here.