Electrification - Chapter 1: Introduction: electrification and the energy transition

Elsevier, Electrification, Accelerating the Energy Transition, 2021, Pages 3-24
Pami Aalto, Teresa Haukkala, Sarah Kilpeläinen, and Matti Kojo

In this chapter, we characterize electrification as a megatrend directly shaping not only the energy system but also society, global development, and energy politics internationally. In particular, we highlight the high potency of electrification as a master solution for an accelerated transition to climate neutrality. Although electrification simultaneously creates challenges of its own, a high degree of electrification is technically possible, politically increasingly supported, and can be pushed further by emerging innovations. By referencing studies in the socio-technical literature, institutionalism, and political economy, we also draw attention to the different enablers and constraints on electrification that emerge when different actors and stakeholders on the micro-, meso-, and macro-levels of society are affected by electrification or themselves contribute to it. Finally, we introduce the subsequent chapters to this book on solutions and policy instruments to promote accelerated electrification.