Christmas greetings from Viking Heat Engines

Companies have to be given incentives to change their ways, says Tore Hansen-Tangen, Executive Chairman of Viking Heat Engines. He hopes for bolder actions from politicians in the new year ahead to encourage investments in green technology.

Dear Friends,

We are getting close to Christmas. For many of us, it's the time of the year when we enjoy time together with our families and friends. I’m aware that most of the world’s population do not celebrate Christmas like we do in Scandinavia, but almost everyone has a religious holiday once a year where peace, harmony and love are in focus. And all of us, whether Christians, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus or people with other beliefs, normally have one common wish above all else, a wish for a healthy and prosperous year to come for their family, friends and the planet.

Tore_298x298For me, Christmas starts when the church choir sings “Fairest Lord Jesus” (Deilig er Jorden). The song starts with the words: “Wonderful is the earth”. The song and its melody normally give me an inner peace and a good Christmas feeling. But this year, I’m afraid it will be different as I’m angry and frustrated that world leaders aren’t doing enough to tackle climate change. How much more proof do they need before taking action?

“Leaders of the world, you must lead,” said Sir David Attenborough, broadcaster and natural historian, at the recent climate summit in Poland (COP24). To lead is not a popularity contest. It’s a lonely job that requires making lots of tough decisions based on all available facts. Well, the facts are pretty clear in this case. Scientists have given us 12 years to change our ways before we end up becoming a gigantic Titanic.

At Viking Heat Engines, we don’t wait for change to happen. We push for change every single day, but there’s no denying that our job would be a lot easier if governments decided to act on the promises they committed to at the climate conference in Paris 2015. When you read this, you might think: “If your technology is so great why do you need support from governments?” The thing is that if companies are not given enough incentives to change their ways the odds are they will continue with business as usual*. Transformation is hard and will come at an initial cost.

Luckily there are more and more examples of what happens when governments take their role seriously. About a year ago, we started getting requests from New Zealand, and soon the country’s Minister of Energy & Resources knocked on our door. Her country had committed to zero net emissions by 2050 and now she was on a worldwide quest to find the best solutions to get her country off fossil fuels. When she heard about our industrial, high-temperature heat pump that allows the industrial sector to switch from fossil fuels to renewable energy she was eager to meet us.

Yes, it’s true. The world no longer needs fossil fuels to produce high-temperature heat. Thanks to our technology, the industrial sector can go electric if they want to, and they can do it today. And what's more, we beat solar and wind power when it comes to CO2 reduction. In fact, we can eliminate 1 per cent of the world’s annual CO2 emission reduction target**. 

That said, we really like solar and wind power. But renewables can’t do the job alone. The world needs help from energy efficient technologies like our heat pump to have a fair chance of keeping the increase in global average temperature to well below 2°C.

And who wouldn’t like to win this massive challenge we have ahead of us? I certainly do. Not only for the sake of my children and grandchildren, but so that many more generations will get to experience the inner peace that comes with listening to their favorite holiday carol.

From all of us at Viking Heat Engines, I wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. 

*According to UN IPCC, business as usual will lead to a global warming of about 4 °C until the year 2100.

** To meet the 1.5°C-target agreed to in Paris, the world needs to reduce an average of 1 gigatons of CO2 per year.

Tore Hansen-Tangen

Tores signature

Executive Chairman

Viking Heat Engines

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