Advances and enthusiasm for technology
Like many other countries, Switzerland is set to face considerable challenges in terms of the reduction of energy usage and the lowering of greenhouse gas emissions. While part of the global solution depends on individuals’ habits and behavior, technological progress is also one of the keys to efficiency.
In this respect, the canton of Vaud is one of the primary regions in Europe when it comes to innovation, providing researchers, entrepreneurs, and investors with a framework that is all the more favorable in that it is based on a desire shared by public authorities, the world of research, major companies, and new businesses.
A particularly noteworthy statistic is the fact that in the cleantech sector, more than 200 companies were set up in Switzerland in the past ten years, and around 60 of them were established in the canton of Vaud. Over 40 of these focus on the production and the distribution of renewable energies, and around 20 concentrate their activities on energy efficiency issues.
Solaronix, Insolight, and Younergy are start-ups from the EPFL which are active in the solar energy sector. In terms of hydropower, the Mhylab foundation is another illustration of the expertise that can be found in Vaud. Founded in 1993, the laboratory is specialized in the development of turbines adapted to the needs of small hydro power stations that are designed individually.
The HEIG-VD and the EPFL, as well as companies such as Romande Energie and Leclanché, also play a catalyst role in terms of storage and energy efficiency. This is particularly the case in the sector of smart grids, which enable the intelligent management of networks on a large scale or of those in smart cities. Green Motion, which specializes in charging stations for electric vehicles, is especially prominent in this field.