Leaders from around the world will gather in San Francisco soon to celebrate the achievements of states, regions, cities, corporations and others at the sub-national level with respect to climate action. Organizers of the Sept. 12-14 Global Climate Action Summit say the meeting will also serve as a launch pad for deeper commitments to put the world on track to prevent dangerous climate change and realize the historic Paris agreement – even as the U.S. government under the Trump administration takes a different course.
On this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Bill Loveless talks to Carter Roberts, the president and CEO of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) in the United States. WWF is one of the partners in the Global Climate Action Summit, along with other groups including C40Cities, Bloomberg Philanthropies, Ceres and the United Nations Foundation.
Bill and Carter recently sat down at Carter’s office in Washington, D.C. as he prepared for the Summit. Among the topics they touched on were how this meeting, with its emphasis on the roles of sub-national entities in reducing carbon emissions, will differ from other major gatherings on climate change. They also talked about whether D.C. is getting any closer to having a bipartisan discussion on climate change, including the potential impact of a recent bill by a Republican lawmaker to establish a carbon tax in the U.S. Finally, Carter elaborated on the importance of land conservation to a sustainable environment, which will be one of the focal points of the San Francisco summit.
Carter earned his MBA from Harvard Business School following a BA from Princeton University, and subsequently held marketing management positions with Proctor & Gamble and Gillette. He went on to lead international conservation and science programs for 15 years with The Nature Conservancy before joining WWF in 2004.
On this episode of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Bill Loveless speaks with Paula Gold Williams, the President and CEO of CPS Energy in San Antonio, Texas, the largest public electric and gas utility in the U.S. Bill and Paula talk about the changes taking place in the utility sector, with new technology and new expectations making the business more dynamic than ever. One of these areas that Bill and Paula tackle is the emergence of Smart Cities, where the grid will play a central role.
Bill and Paula also discuss how the changes in the industry are opening new career opportunities and creating a more diverse work force. They specifically focus on the growing role of women in the energy sector, a topic Paula regularly speaks on.
Paula Gold Williams joined CPS in 2004 and held a number of top positions at the utility, including Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer, before being named President and CEO in 2016.
As the energy world becomes more integrated, more dynamic and more complex, the need to try and better understand the outlook for the industry only grows. One publication that helps us to do this is the Bloomberg New Energy Outlook Report, an annual long-term economic forecast of the world’s power sector.
On a new episode of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff sits down with Amy Grace, Head of North American Research at Bloomberg New Energy Finance. Amy leads the team responsible for producing the New Energy Outlook and communicating analysis on economics, policy, and the strategic dynamics of the North American power sector.
Amy and Jason caught up in New York to discuss the 2018 outlook Report. Amy explains what differentiates Bloomberg’s Report from other energy publications, BNEF's global outlook for renewables, fossil fuels, and the energy transition as a whole. She also explains why, according to BNEF, solar and wind have already won the race for cheap bulk electricity generation. Jason and Amy also discuss the role of policy for renewables and the likely impact of President Trump’s solar tariffs.
Other topics discussed on this episode include the challenges and the opportunities for electric vehicles and how the transition in the transportation sector will impact oil demand, the electricity sector, and global emissions. Finally, Amy highlights a few key energy technologies we should pay attention to moving forward.
What does it take to move the needle on our energy and climate challenges? How can government, civil society, individuals, and businesses work together so our collective action is greater than the sum of individual contributions? To help shed light on these and other issues, Jason Bordoff recently sat down with Andy Karsner, a Managing Partner at Emerson Collective, an organization focused on spurring change and promoting equality.
Jason and Andy discussed Emerson Collective's theory of change, how the organization measures impact, and how those factors lead to a holistic engagement strategy across technology, policy, finance and network building. Their conversation touched on the benefits and the limits of markets as a source of solutions to our climate challenges and the need to transition from static to dynamic policy structures. They also discussed the changing role of utilities and electricity market regulation as well as the privacy and security considerations of internet-enabled clean technology and distributed generation. Finally, Jason and Andy talked about the need for leadership and national strategies and stretch-goals to achieve ambitious outcomes and maintain US competitiveness.
In addition to his role at the Emerson Collective, Andy is a Senior Strategist and Space Cowboy at Google X, and Founder and Executive Chairman of Manifest Energy. From 2005 to 2008, he served as Assistant Secretary of Energy for Efficiency and Renewable Energy at the US Department of Energy, managing an annual budget of nearly $2 billion across a portfolio focused on applied science, research and development.
From climate policy to geopolitical tensions and sanctions to technological innovation, the energy world is facing enormous change, complexity and uncertainty. To discuss some of today’s most timely issues across the energy landscape, Jason Bordoff recently sat down with Dr. Ernest Moniz, the former U.S. Secretary of Energy.
As Secretary, Dr. Moniz worked across a range of issues from nuclear security and strategic stability to technological innovation and renewable energy to energy efficiency and climate policy. He also served in government as the Energy Department's Under Secretary from 1997-2001 and is the Founding Director of the MIT Energy Initiative and Director of the Laboratory for Energy and the Environment. Dr. Moniz is currently CEO of the Nuclear Threat Initiative, a Distinguished Fellow at the Emerson Collective, and CEO of the Energy Futures Initiative.
On this episode of Columbia Energy Exchange, Dr. Moniz and Jason discussed the status of the global transition to a lower carbon future and what will be needed to not simply meet, but exceed, the goals of the Paris Agreement. Dr. Moniz spoke about the intersections between technological progress, policy frameworks, and business model innovation to drive decarbonization. Dr. Moniz discussed the state of nuclear power technology and the potential for escalating proliferation risks in light of current US-Russia tensions. Dr. Moniz and Jason also discussed the outlook for the Iran nuclear agreement, and what the implications may be for energy markets, following the Trump Administration’s decision to withdraw from the deal.