Opening Keynote

Niel Golightly
Royal Dutch Shell

Scenarios for World Energy


Morning Session

Energy Usage
Key Countries &
Energy Sectors

Panel discussion by academic,
industry & NGO experts


Afternoon Session

Energy Sources
Disruptive Energy
Technologies & Policies

Panel discussion by academic, industry
& government experts


Closing Keynote

Dr. Rajendra Pachauri
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

Energy Scenarios and Climate Impacts


Poster Session

Student research in
climate & energy at Yale


Welcome to Energy/Future 2030

Please join Yale Climate & Energy Institute in Kroon Hall on April 17th for Energy/Future: A critical look at the world of energy in 2030. Jumping off from today's projections, a distinguished international group of experts from industry, government, universities and NGOs will examine key countries, sectors, technologies and policies that may disrupt conventional views and dramatically change the world of energy within the next 15 years.

Our Fifth Annual Conference will honor Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and first director of YCEI, who will close the event with an address on energy scenarios and climate impacts from the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report.

A critical look at the world of energy in 2030

There's an adage about the world of energy that investors often discover to their dismay: "Everyone overestimates how far energy markets can move in three years. And everyone underestimates how much they will move in ten." What about fifteen years? The year 2030 is close enough to expect that its energy systems will look much like what we see today. More than 250 years after the start of the Industrial Revolution — which was ultimately an energy revolution driven by a cheap, portable and abundant source of power in the form of coal — fossil fuels provide the world with more than 85% of its primary energy. Will coal, oil and natural gas still be providing up to 75% of world energy in 15 years, as most of today's projections maintain?

The enormous inertia of our centralized infrastructure argues for this conventional wisdom. Fifteen years, however, is long enough for disruptive technologies to diffuse through the world much farther than predicted. The cost of distributed solar power, for example, has been falling with such Moore's Law-like regularity that solar electricity appears headed within this decade for "grid parity", the price at which it can compete penny for penny with electricity from coal-fired and natural gas-fired power plants after distribution over the grid by utility companies. Battery technology has improved to the point where it can provide backup and storage for the intermittent power of wind and solar, but will probably require more breakthroughs to match the convenience, energy density and cost of liquid fuels for transportation.

In the background of falling prices for renewables is rising demand for energy. Driven largely by improving standards of living in the developing world, energy use is expected to grow by nearly 2% per year until 2030. Also rising is the Keeling Curve: this record of carbon-dioxide concentration in the atmosphere, recorded continuously since 1958 at Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii, crossed the 400 ppm level in 2013, a threshold that probably had not been breached during the previous 3 million years (the first recording in 1958 was about 315 ppm). The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) will release this month the final two installments of its Fifth Assessment Report. Along with the first installment released in September, Climate Change 2013 — The Physical Science Basis, these volumes provide incontrovertible evidence of global warming and describe in vivid detail the extraordinary impacts that man-made greenhouse gases are having on natural ecosystems.

Some climate scientists believe that greater reliance on nuclear energy during the next decades is needed to avoid catastrophic climate change. Others have argued that natural gas, along with more aggressive use of carbon capture and storage, can provide a cheaper, safer and more reliable energy path to the next century. Reactions to the disaster at the Fukushima nuclear plant and concerns about possible environmental hazards of hydraulic fracturing for shale gas suggest that, for now at least, the public is not yet persuaded that these are easy choices. Worldwide reaction to the Fifth Assessment Report will gauge whether the public still needs to be convinced that the transition to a zero-emissions energy system must start now.

— Yale Climate & Energy Institute

Wednesday, April 16

Reception & Dinner (By Invitation Only)

The conference reception and dinner for speakers, distinguished guests and invited YCEI faculty, staff and students will be on Wednesday evening, April 16, starting at 6:00 p.m., in the Leitner Observatory at Yale.

Dan Kahan, Elizabeth K. Dollard Professor of Law and Professor of Psychology at Yale Law School, will give the dinner address on Risk Perception, Science Literacy and Climate Change

Thursday, April 17
Morning Session

8:30 Welcome
Mark Pagani, Yale Climate & Energy Institute

8:45 Opening Keynote
Scenarios for World Energy
Niel Golightly, Royal Dutch Shell

9:45 Morning Panel
Energy Usage | Key Countries & Energy Sectors
Moderator: David Lawrence, Stone Energy Corporation

Regional Energy Planning
Daniel Esty, Yale Law School (formerly, Connecticut Department of Energy & Environmental Protection)

Energy and Emissions in China
Zhang Xiliang, Director of the Institute for Energy, Environment, and Economy, Tsinghua University

Energy Paths for Electric Power
Karen Hussey, Australian National University

Energy Paths for Transportation
Luke Tonachel, Natural Resources Defense Council

11:30 Lunch | Student Poster Sessions

Afternoon Session

1:45 Afternoon Panel
Energy Sources | Disruptive Energy Technologies & Policies
Moderator: Hon. Stéphane Dion, Member of Parliament, Canada

The Outlook for National and International Energy Policy
Holmes Hummel, formerly U.S. Department of Energy

Emergence and Diffusion of Disruptive Energy Technologies
Nebojsa Nakicenovic, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis

Nuclear Energy as a Disruptive Technology
Richard Lester, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

The Rise of Solar Energy
Vanessa E-H Stewart, Soltage

3:30 Break | Student Poster Sessions

4:00 Keynote
IPCC Convention Working Group III Report
Karen Seto, Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies

4:30 Closing Keynote
Energy Scenarios and Climate Impacts
Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

At Peabody Museum of Natural History following the Closing Keynote

Scenarios for World Energy

Niel Golightly
Royal Dutch Shell
Niel Golightly is Vice President Americas Communications for Shell Oil Company in Houston. He was previously based in London, where he led communications and stakeholder engagement for Shell’s Downstream businesses, including alternative energies. Before joining Shell in 2006, he led Sustainable Business Strategies for Ford Motor Company in Dearborn, Michigan, where he worked closely with the organization SustainAbility to produce the auto industry’s first-ever report on the business implications of climate change. His career has spanned a wide range of roles, from sustainable development and corporate communications, to chief of staff for the Chairman of Ford, to Pentagon speechwriting, to U.S. naval aviator. He is a member of the board of the British-American Business Council and a private pilot.


David Lawrence
Stone Energy Corporation
David Lawrence is currently a director of Stone Energy Corporation. Before joining the board of Stone Energy, he served as Executive Vice President Exploration and Commercial for Shell Upstream Americas and Functional Head of Global Exploration for Royal Dutch Shell from 2009 until his retirement in 2013. Previous roles at Shell included Executive Vice President Global Exploration in The Hague and Executive Vice President Investor Relations in London. Dave is the recipient of the Wallace Pratt Memorial Award, Distinguished Lecturer, and Halbouty Lecturer from the American Association of Petroleum Geologists and an American Petroleum Institute Meritorious Service Award. He served as a Commissioner of the Aspen Institute Commission on the Arctic, was a member of the API Upstream Committee, where he helped lead efforts to establish the Center for Offshore Safety, and is a Trustee Associate of the American Association of Petroleum Geologists Foundation. Dr. Lawrence was recently selected to chair the External Advisory Board of Yale Climate & Energy Institute.

Regional Energy Planning

Daniel Esty
Yale Law School
Daniel C. Esty is Hillhouse Professor of Environmental Law and Policy, with appointments at both the Yale Law School and the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. He is also Director of the Yale Center for Environmental Law and Policy as well as the Center for Business and the Environment at Yale. From 2011 to 2014, he served as Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, which is charged with conserving, improving and protecting the natural resources and the environment of the state of Connecticut as well as making cheaper, cleaner and more reliable energy available for its people and businesses. His research has focused on next‑generation regulation and the relationships between the environment and trade, competitiveness, governance, and corporate strategy. He is the author or editor of ten books and numerous articles on environmental policy issues, including the prizewinning volume Green to Gold: How Smart Companies Use Environmental Strategy to Innovate, Create Value, and Build Competitive Advantage.

Energy and Emissions in China

Zhang Xiliang
Tsinghua University
Zhang Xiliang is Professor of Economics and Executive Director of the Institute of Energy, Environment, and Economy at Tsinghua University, Beijing, China. His current research interests include innovation in energy technology, integrated assessment of energy and climate policies, renewable energy, and automotive energy. He was a leader of the group that drafted the China Renewable Energy Law in 2004–05, an expert advisor for the group that drafted the China Circular Economy Law in 2007 and is co-chief scientist of a research project of the Ministry of Science and Technology on Climate Change Mitigation Targets, Pathways and Policies. He was a lead author of the last two IPCC Climate Change Assessment Reports and of the chapter on energy in the China National Climate Change Assessment Report. He has been vice chair of the China Renewable Energy Industry Association since 2011.

Energy Paths for Electric Power

Karen Hussey
Australian National University
Karen Hussey is an Associate Professor at the Fenner School of Environment and Society at the Australian National University (ANU), where she undertakes research on policies, institutions and governance for sustainable development. She leads several projects assessing the effectiveness of Australian laws and policies for supporting adaptation to climate change and increasing resilience to natural disasters. She also studies technology integration in the national electricity market and the energy-water nexus. For several years, Karen was based in Brussels as the ANU Representative in Europe, where she was responsible for developing research relationships between ANU and European institutions. Dr. Hussey is co-author of Environment and Sustainability: A Policy Handbook, published by Federation Press (2013, 2nd edition) and a forthcoming book Climate, Energy and Water: Managing trade-offs, seizing opportunities (2014, Cambridge University Press). 

Energy Paths for Transportation

Luke Tonachel
Natural Resources Defense Council
Luke Tonachel is senior vehicles analyst for the Natural Resources Defense Council. Based in New York City, his focus since joining NRDC in 2004 has been on reducing the environmental impacts of the world's transportation demands by adopting policies that develop and commercialize cleaner, more efficient vehicles and non-petroleum fuels. He gained hands-on experience with energy systems and propulsion plants while serving in the U.S. Navy as an engineering officer on a Navy cruiser.


Hon. Stéphane Dion
Member of Parliament, Canada
Hon. Stéphane Dion is Member of Parliament for the riding of Saint-Laurent-Cartierville in Montreal, Canada, since 1996.  He was Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs between 1996 and 2003, longer than any other Canadian since Confederation. As Minister of the Environment from 2004 to 2005, he secured one of the greenest budgets in the history of Canada and in 2005 contributed to the rescue of the Kyoto Protocol while chairing the UN Conference on Climate Change in Montreal. From 2006 to 2008, he was Leader of the Liberal Party of Canada. He was the recipient of the 2011 Couchiching Award for Public Policy Leadership. Hon. Dion is a member of the External Advisory Board of Yale Climate & Energy Institute.

The Outlook for National and International Energy Policy

Holmes Hummel
formerly U.S. Department of Energy
Holmes Hummel recently completed service as the Senior Policy Advisor in the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Policy & International Affairs. In that role since 2009, Dr. Hummel engaged a wide range of industry and public interest stakeholders to inform energy policy deliberations on such topics as energy efficiency and finance, infrastructure development, water and energy independence, unconventional natural gas, trade policy, environmental regulation and grid reliability. Dr. Hummel previously served as an AAAS Congressional Science Fellow focused on energy and climate policy and later founded the Climate Policy Design Pro Series for entrepreneurs and public service advocates in Silicon Valley. At Stanford, Holmes was among the first graduates of the Interdisciplinary Program on Environment and Resources, earning a Ph.D. for research that analyzed the implications of long-term energy scenarios for climate stabilization.

Emergence and Diffusion of Disruptive Energy Technologies

Nebojsa Nakicenovic
International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis
Nebojsa Nakicenovic is Deputy Director General and Deputy CEO of the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) and Professor of Energy Economics at the Vienna University of Technology. His research interests include long-term patterns of technological change, economic development and response to climate change and, in particular, the evolution of energy, mobility, and information and communication technologies. He is a member of many international advisory boards and panels, including the United Nations Secretary General High-Level Technical Group on Sustainable Energy for All, the Global Carbon Project, and the Earth Institute of Columbia University. He was Director of the Global Energy Assessment (GEA), and a Coordinating Lead Author of many IPCC Assessment Reports and the Millenium Ecosystem Assessment.

Nuclear Energy as a Disruptive Technology

Richard Lester
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Richard K. Lester is Japan Steel Industry Professor and head of the Department of Nuclear Science and Engineering at MIT, where he is also the founding director and faculty chair of the Industrial Performance Center (IPC). His research focuses on the study of innovation systems, with an emphasis on the energy and manufacturing sectors. He is also active in research and teaching on nuclear technology management, innovation, and control. His latest book, Unlocking Energy Innovation: How America Can Build a Low-Cost, Low-Carbon Energy System (MIT Press, 2012) outlines a strategy for mobilizing America’s innovation resources in the service of a decades-long transition to a more-efficient, low-carbon global energy system.

The Rise of Solar Energy

Vanessa E-H Stewart
Vanessa E-H Stewart is the Chief Operating Officer and co-founder of Soltage, a full service renewable energy company that develops, finances, and operates solar energy stations on client structures across the USA. Soltage is backed by a group of investors, including Tenaska, one of America’s largest independent energy companies with approximately 11,000 megawatts of power-generating assets under management. Prior to founding Soltage in 2005, she launched several cleantech products as Best Available Control Technologies for the Oregon and Washington Departments of Transportation and Caltrans, under federal contracts with the Environmental Protection Agency. She has consulted on energy financing with utility companies in the Southwest and with Native American Tribes and was a Solar Energy Liaison of the U.S. Department of Energy in the U.S. Mission to the United Nations.

IPCC Convention Recap

Karen Seto
Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies
Karen Seto is Professor of Geography and Urbanization at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. Her research focuses on urban land use change, forecasting urban growth, and the environmental consequences of urban expansion. She has pioneered methods using satellite remote sensing to reconstruct historical patterns of urbanization and to develop projections of future urban expansion. She specializes in China and India, where she has conducted urbanization research for more than fifteen years. She is Co-Chair of the Future Earth Project on Urbanization and Global Environmental Change, and a Coordinating Lead Author of the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report, chapter on Human Settlements, Infrastructure and Spatial Planning.

Energy Scenarios and Climate Impacts

Dr. Rajendra Pachauri
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
Dr. Rajendra Kumar Pachauri is the Chair of the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the scientific intergovernmental body that provides decision-makers and the public with an objective source of information about climate change. He is also Director General of TERI (The Energy and Resources Institute), a major independent research organization providing knowledge on energy, environment, forestry, biotechnology, and conservation of natural resources. Dr. Pachauri is a prominent researcher on environmental subjects, recognized internationally for his efforts to build up and disseminate greater knowledge about man-made climate change and to lay the foundations for the measures that are needed to counteract such change. He has been Senior Adviser to Yale Climate & Energy Institute (YCEI) from July 2012, prior to which he was Founding Director of YCEI for three years. He is active in several international forums dealing with the subject of climate change and its policy dimensions. He was awarded the second-highest civilian award in India, the Padma Vibhushan in January 2008 by the President of India and received the Officier de la Légion d'honneur from the Government of France in 2006. Other government honors received include: The Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star, from Japan; the Commander of the Order of the White Rose of Finland; the Commander of the Order of Leopold II, from Belgium; and the Mexican Order of the Aztec Eagle in June 2012.

Conference Venue

Thursday, April 17, 2014 | 8:30 am

Burke Auditorium, Kroon Hall
195 Prospect Street
New Haven, CT


Opening Reception & Dinner

Wednesday, April 16, 2014 | 6:00 pm

(by invitation only)
The Leitner Family Observatory
355 Prospect Street
New Haven, CT

YCEI Fifth Annual Conference is free of charge and open to everyone, but space is limited. Secure your spot now.

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