Annette Clayton, CEO of Schneider Electric North America, is at the forefront of shaping the energy-management company into an industry leader in sustainable electrical systems and supply chains. In her role overseeing the regional business strategy, Clayton emphasizes the importance of understanding electricity use to disrupt and realign key sectors – buildings, supply chain, and infrastructure – towards achieving net-zero goals. She believes that governments and the private sector must collaborate to enable the swift deployment of solutions like microgrids, optimizing energy management.
Clayton underscores the need to bring attention to climate technologies that are pivotal yet often overlooked. Solutions such as virtual power plants and distributed energy resource management systems play a crucial role in combating climate change. By integrating diverse distributed energy resources, these technologies enhance grid resilience, flexibility, and efficiency. Real-time coordination of tools like rooftop solar, home batteries, EVs, and heat pumps can reduce reliance on fossil fuels, paving the way for a decentralized and democratic clean energy future.
When asked about crucial climate legislation, Clayton highlights recent laws like the U.S. Inflation Reduction Act, emphasizing their transformative impact on climate action. Schneider Electric actively collaborates with partners and customers to maximize the incentives offered by these laws. Clayton stresses the significance of full and strategic implementation, along with the potential for additional legislation addressing permitting reform, research and development, and supply chains. Removing burdensome project requirements, boosting investment in energy research, and fortifying critical supply chains are seen as key measures to enhance U.S. competitiveness and grid resilience.