Prof Andrew Keane spoke to's Ann O'Dea about the potential routes to a net-zero economy and the need for a collaborative approach to achieve that future.

In the latest in our Creating The Future series, Prof Andrew Keane sat down with Ann O’Dea to discuss a range of issues such as international energy grids, the potential of green hydrogen and decarbonising the aviation industry.

Keane works with the Energy Institute at University College Dublin and is head of NexSys (Next Generation Energy Systems), the major all-island research programme that targets the development of credible pathways to a net-zero carbon energy system.

With a combination of experience in research and industry, Keane shared his insights on the challenges both sides face in terms of trying to decarbonise the economy and reach a net-zero energy system.

“We can kind of imagine what that might look like in the future. There’s a need for real deep research to try and identify the pathway to actually getting there, to actually making that system work and work reliably and securely,” he said.

Keane believes the greatest challenge to a net-zero future is possibly the societal transition. He discussed how NexSys works to bring different types of disciplines together to look at the challenges from different angles and how that multidisciplinary approach “doesn’t often naturally happen within our university systems”.


Words by Leigh Mc Gowran