• Mission Innovation – next steps on the road to MI 2.0

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      Philip Sharman

      IFRF Director

Hosted by the Chilean government, senior representatives of Mission Innovation (MI) met virtually on 8-12 February 2021 for its ‘Annual Gathering’.  Designed and delivered by the MI Secretariat in close collaboration with the Steering Committee and Chilean colleagues, this event attracted senior officials from member country governments and collaborating organisations.

The event opened with an inspiring Call to Action issued by the Honourable Dr Harsh Vardhan, Minister of Science and Technology, Health and Family Welfare from the government of India.   Dr Vardhan reiterated India’s deep commitment to Mission Innovation and the importance of innovation in transforming the global clean energy landscape.

On the road to ‘MI 2.0’
Following a unanimous decision by Ministers at the fifth MI Ministerial (MI-5) in September 2020 to develop an ambitious second phase of the initiative (‘MI 2.0’), the 2021 Annual Gathering was a crucial milestone and decision-making point on the way to the launch of MI 2.0 at MI-6 in May-June this year.  At the meeting, members plotted a path forward and unanimously agreed that this is the most important decade for clean energy innovation on a global scale.  Several members embarking on pathways to net-zero greenhouse gas emissions highlighted the sheer scale of the challenge ahead and the need for innovation across all sectors of the economy.

MI 2.0 will play an important part.  Members discussed and prioritised the first topics for Missions (i.e. global public-private alliances to accelerate tipping points for proven, affordable and scalable clean energy solutions).  Over the last five years, MI has already demonstrated its willingness to work together to develop the next generation of clean energy technologies the world needs.   Over the next decade, it will build on its successes, enhancing collaboration and learning through a cross-cutting, flexible, needs-driven suite of Modules under the Innovation Platform.

The stage is now set for the sixth MI Ministerial, due to take place from 31 May to 6 June 2021.

Framed as THE clean energy innovation event of 2021, MI-6 will provide a highly innovative platform to launch MI 2.0 with the highest-level participation of members, collaborating organisations and climate champions.  Taking place alongside the 12th Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM), MI-6 will encompass a suite of virtual events for governments, stakeholders and the public at large.

“By harnessing the ingenuity of scientists, engineers, policy makers and business leaders from around the globe, we can continue to accelerate clean energy technology and innovation and support economic recovery from COVID-19” said Juan Carlos Jobet, Chile’s Energy Minister at the Annual Gathering in February.  “At MI-6, we will come together to attend, cooperate, collaborate, innovate and lead on clean energy during this crucial year in climate action.”

Innovating for a clean energy transition: a joint endeavour
The MI membership was delighted to welcome senior representation from Breakthrough Energy, the Global Covenant of Mayors, IEA, IRENA, the World Bank and the World Economic Forum to the Annual Gathering.  It was evident that there are several areas of potential synergies to be captured as the components of MI 2.0 take shape and MI is working with these organisations to develop the next phase of these important partnerships.

For more background on Mission Innovation, see an IFRF Blogpost from December 2019