ETH and EPFL form coalition for green energy


Zurich/Lausanne/Interlaken BE – The two Federal Institutes of Technology in Zurich (ETH) and Lausanne (EPFL) presented their green energy coalition at the Swiss Economic Forum. Together with partners from politics and industry, it wants to make technologies for storing renewables marketable.

ETH and EPFL made their plans for a green energy coalition public at the Swiss Economic Forum in Interlaken on June 8. “With the coalition, we want to quickly bring existing technologies for CO2 capture and for the production and storage of carbon-neutral gases and fuels to market and raise them to an industrial level,” ETH President Joël Mesot summarized the plan for a release from his university. The goal, he said, is to enable a scalable, carbon-neutral and flexible energy system and achieve the net-zero target set by 2050.

For this coalition, ETH and EPFL want to join their own forces and work with partners. “The two Federal Institutes of Technology alone have more than 150 research groups in the field of energy, as well as about 460 researchers and four successful spin-offs in the field of carbon capture and energy storage,” said EPFL President Martin Vetterli. “Together with other research groups at PSI and Empa, the ETH Domain has both the expertise and the size to work with companies to respond to current challenges.” Now the two universities are looking for technology and implementation partners, as well as funders and supporters from politics and society.

Some 20 companies have already expressed their willingness to cooperate, including Alpiq, AMAG, Emil Frey, SBB, Implenia, MAN, Migros and Swiss International Airlines. Entrepreneur and patron Hansjörg Wyss has also pledged his support.

Later this year, ETH and EPFL will formally launch their green energy coalition. The first projects will start in early 2024. Demonstrators in the megawatt range, for example, are being built. A budget of around 100 million Swiss francs would be needed for the first phase. ce/mm