What does green mean?

The Explorer’s definition of green

The Explorer operates with a very broad definition of “green”:

Green solutions are defined as technologies, products and processes that reduce impact, directly or indirectly, on the environment compared to their current alternatives.

The EU has a timeline for going green

In line with the Paris Agreement, the EU is aiming to be a carbon-neutral economy by 2050. On the way there, climate and energy targets have been set for 2030:

  • At least 40 per cent cuts in greenhouse gas emissions (from 1990 levels)
  • At least 32 per cent share for renewable energy
  • At least 32.5 per cent improvement in energy efficiency

Based on this timeline, solutions are divided into three rough groups:

It is very important to note that developments are not static, or even linear. Solutions that were once considered a utopian dream, can be practically implemented tomorrow. Other solutions that were once considered a key to reducing emissions, can now come up short. And there is always a good measure of uncertainty

Examples from The Explorer

Medium term/green

Norwegian Technology – treatment of wastewater from industry, including the petroleum industry

Egil Ulvan Rederi – LNG electric cargo ship

These are categorised as medium term because they are part of the broader fossil fuel sector, and this sector will play a significantly smaller role in the carbon-neutral economy after 2050.

Long term/dark green

WINNS – tap water heat pumps and cooling systems using carbon dioxide as a refrigerant

Kongsberg Digital – EmPower software for wind farm management

Borregaard/Exilva – wood-based additive to replace oil-based additive

In general, what are green solutions?

They include solutions for:

  • Reducing greenhouse gas emissions directly or indirectly.

  • Reducing air pollution such as NOx, particulate matter etc.

  • Renewable energy production.

  • Waste to energy.

  • Increasing energy efficiency.

  • Improving utilisation of renewable bio-based resources.

  • Improving utilisation of inorganic resources, minerals and other non-renewable resources. NB! Solutions that only increase the efficiency of oil and gas recovery, or other traditional industries, and do not contribute to solving an environmental problem are not considered green.

  • Recycling, reuse, improving utilisation of residual raw materials and the circular economy.

  • Water and wastewater treatment.

  • Reducing use of chemicals, antibiotics and other hazardous substances.

Read the full criteria for publishing a green solution here.