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Climate protection: “If you don’t stay open, you’ll miss the next steps”

Climate protection: “If you don’t stay open, you’ll miss the next steps”

Energy technology expert Bruno Lindorfer
Image: OON

It is primarily a discussion that is being held at an expert and political level: Should we concentrate fully on electric cars when it comes to mobility or should we remain open to technology, i.e. leave other options open in research and development?

While in climate protection circles and predominantly among the Greens, electromobility is in the foreground and openness to technology is seen as a stance against the energy transition, the industry advocates keeping several options open (see also the interview with BMW Steyr boss Klaus von Moltke).

The long-time head of research at Voest Industrial Plant Engineering, head of the location agency TMG and later technology representative for the state of Upper Austria, Bruno Lindorfer, has a clear opinion on this. “Anyone who is not open to technology will miss the next steps of development”he says, referring, for example, to cars or cell phones, where companies with disruptive (i.e. system-changing) technologies are miles ahead of the others.

“The essentials are left behind”

In some quasi-religious discussions, the view of what is essential and feasible disappears. This is also the case with vehicle drives. “While electric drives and the abolition of the internal combustion engine are being discussed eagerly, what is overlooked is that the big problems are not mobility at all, but heat – for private individuals and companies”says Lindorfer.

If voestalpine wants to produce hydrogen-based steel at the end of the day, it needs 33 terawatt hours of energy per year. That is twice what five million electric cars would consume in Austria.

To do this, it should be checked to see what fits together. “PV and air conditioning systems go together, but PV and heat pumps do not because they both deliver too little in winter. All of this should be discussed openly”says Lindorfer.

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