Microsoft and Accenture have launched a new plan to help the UK achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.
The firms – along with their joint venture, Avanade – will use their expertise in cloud, data, artificial intelligence, internet of things, digital twins and digital transformation to help utility and energy companies to lower the cost of decarbonising electricity in the UK.
“Last year Microsoft announced we would be carbon negative by 2030 and remove our entire carbon footprint by 2050,” said Clare Barclay, CEO at Microsoft UK. “A fundamental way in which we aim to achieve these targets is through technological innovation.
“Likewise, we pledged to develop and deploy digital technologies to help others reduce their carbon footprints. As part of our commitment to creating a greener and sustainable world, we are proud to partner with Accenture and Avanade to deploy technologies to help UK-based utility companies transform the generation, storage and supply of clean energy.”
To help utility and energy businesses reduce the cost of renewable generation and meet renewable electricity demands, Microsoft, Accenture and Avanade will encourage the use of open industry data to "provide secure, consistent and accessible information that will drive efficiency, support cross-industry innovation around new markets and improve asset performance and optimisation”, said Microsoft in a recent news story.
The new plan will also help businesses implement digital tools among their workforces. “Connected workers, for instance, could access support remotely, resulting in higher task completion rates, improved productivity and enhanced safety in the field,” said Microsoft.
“The UK’s targets for net-zero push focus onto the energy and utilities sectors, through which the most significant impacts on decarbonisation can be made,” said Toby Siddall, a lead for Accenture’s Resources business in the UK and Ireland. “The time for action is now, and it will require innovative new approaches, solutions and ecosystems.
“Our integrated approach to decarbonisation stems from a mutual belief that data and digital transformation are essential in enabling the transition to a low-carbon future, and it can lead to growth, new skills and competitiveness for the UK. We believe it is a perfect focus for this collaboration between Accenture, Avanade and Microsoft, which can help drive the step changes needed.”