The Scale of Deep Decarbonization

2017 Low-emissions Solutions Conference in NYC

The outcomes from this event will be presented at a special event at COP23

September 20-21, 2017

Faculty House, Columbia University
64 Morningside Drive, New York, NY 10027

The successful implementation of the Paris Agreement will depend on the deployment of Low Emission Development Strategies (LEDSs) and Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). Technological developments and innovative practices will be key in this process.

The Low-Emissions Solutions Conference (LESC) is aimed at problem solving, brainstorming, and global co-creation to inform nations about the latest technology developments. It brings together technical experts and world-leading scientists, engineers and innovators from business, academia, and cities, to share knowledge, exchange information, identify bottlenecks, discuss best practices, and prioritize future research in order to set common technological trajectories for a decarbonized economy as well as the transformations necessary in each sector.

The key outcomes of the LESC will feed into the Global Climate Action Agenda.


Download the NYC LESC conference agenda (171kb).

  • September 20



    Registration Opens
    LESC Partner Welcome
    • Speakers
    • Guido Schmidt-Traub, Director, SDSN
    • Angie Fyfe, CEO, ICLEI USA
    • Rasmus Valanko, Director Climate & Energy, WBCSD
    Progress Since Last Year and Expectations for COP23
    • Speakers
    • Laurence Tubiana, CEO, European Climate Foundation
    Conference Expectations and Enel Introduction
    • Speakers
    • Jeffrey Sachs, Director SDSN
    Road Towards Zero Emissions: Vision for the Future of the Energy Industry
    • Speakers
    • Francesco Starace, CEO, Enel
    Networking Break
    Session A: Deep Decarbonization Pathways: Where Do They Lead?
    • Speakers
    • Chaired by Jim Williams, Associate Professor in Energy Systems, University of San Francisco
    • Chaired by Margaret Torn, Professor, U.C. Berkeley
    • Chris Battaille, Researcher, Simon Fraser University
    • Daniel Buira, Founder, Tempus Analytica
    • Grace Wu, PhD Candidate, Energy and Resources Group, U.C. Berkeley and Researcher, Berkeley Lab
    • Meg Argyriou Head of Engagement, ClimateWorks Australia
    • Noah Kaufman, Economist, WRI



    Lunch (Provided)
    Session B: Demand Side Solutions to Renewable Integration: Do They Scale?
    • Speakers
    • Chaired by Vijay Modi, Professor, Columbia University
    • Dan Steingart Professor, Princeton
    • Greg Geller Director, Regulatory & Government A airs, EnerNOC
    • Ben Haley Co-Founder, Energy Evolved Research (EER)
    • Chen Li CEO, Gotion INC
    Networking Break
    Session C. Renewable Electricity Systems: How High Can We Go?
    • Speakers
    • Chaired by Angie Fyfe, CEO, ICLEI USA
    • Elaine Hart - Power analyst, Portland General Electric
    • Trieu Mai, Senior Energy Analyst, National Renewable Energy Laboratory
    • Said Mouline, Head of the Moroccan Agency for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency
    • Mayor Uy-Tan, Mayor, Catbalogan Samar Province, Philippines
    • Tor Henrik Andersen, Political Adviser to the Governing Mayor of Oslo, City of Oslo
    • Jean-Pierre MAUGENDRE, Sustainable Development Deputy Manager, SUEZ
    Closing Remarks
  • September 21



    • Speakers
    • H.E. Mr. Salaheddine Mezouar COP22 President, UNFCCC
    Session D. Autonomous and Electric Vehicles: On the Road to Deep Decarbonization?
    • Speakers
    • Chaired by Rasmus Valanko, Director Climate & Energy, WBCSD
    • Lewis Fulton, Director, Sustainable Transportation Energy Pathways, UC Davis ITS
    • Jason Babbie, Deputy Director, Urban Solutions & Strategic Program Development, NRDC
    • Doug Kaufman, CEO, Transloc
    • Corey Ershow Transportation Policy Manager, Lyft
    • Jean-Philippe Hermine, Renault VP Environment Strategy & Planning, Renault-Nissan Alliance
    • Vidar Helgesen, Minister of Climate and Environment, Norway
    Session E: Alternative Energy, Nuclear and CCS: What are the Prospects?
    • Speakers
    • Chaired by William Horak, Chair of the Department of Nuclear Science and Technology, Brookhaven National Laboratory
    • Rachel Slaybaugh, Assistant Professor Nuclear Engineering Dept, UC Berkeley
    • Lenka Kollar, Director, NuScale Power
    • Howard Hornfeld Founder and President Fusion Advocates, Geneva, Switzerland
    • Klaus Lackner, Director, Center for Negative Carbon Emissions, Arizona State University
    • Bjørn Otto Sverdrup Senior Vice President, Corporate Sustainability, Statoil ASA
    Closing Remarks
    • Speakers
    • Jeff Sachs, Director, SDSN



    Documentary Pre-Screening

    Private theatre screening of a new, not yet released, documentary followed by live Q&A with filmmaker David Schumacher. The screening is in the Schapiro/CEPSR building, Davis Auditorium on the 4th floor (campus level), room 412 (10 minute walk from Conference Venue). This part of the program is co-hosted with the Columbia University Center on Global Energy Policy.


  • LESC Partner Welcome

    Michael Shank introduces: Angie Fyfe, Guido Schmidt-Traub, Rasmus Valanko. The beginning of the 2017 Low-Emissions Solutions Conference.

  • LESC 2017 Progress Since Last Year and Expectations for COP23

    Laurence Tubiana, CEOP European Climate Foundation discusses planning and progress of climate solutions, and the future expectations for COP23.

  • Conference Expectations and Enel Introduction

    Jeffery Sachs talks about creating discussions around solutions for low-emissions and introduces Enel.

  • LESC 2017 Road Towards Zero Emissions

    Francesco Starace, CEO of Enel, discusses how new technologies can allow the future of the energy industry achieve zero emissions.

Resources & Presentations

Session A: Deep Decarbonization Pathways: Where Do They Lead?
Title File Size

Scale Challenges of Deep Decarbonization

Remarks by Prof. Jim Williams, University of San Francisco

354KB Download

Principles for Policy Packages for Deep (80-100%+) Decarbonization

Chris Bataille, Simon Frasier University

1.7MB Download

Deep Decarbonization Planning: Challenges in Mexico

Daniel Buira, Tempus Analytica

1MB Download

The Role of National Governments in Developing Deep Decarbonization Pathways

Noah Kaufman, WRI

1.3MB Download

Deep Decarbonization Pathways: A look from Australia

Meg Argyriou, Climateworks

2MB Download

Integrated Land use Planning for Managing Climate Mitigation, Biodiversity, and Food Production

Grace Wu, UC Berkeley

1.2MB Download
Session B: Demand Side Solutions to Renewable Integration: Do They Scale?
Title File Size

Storage and Demand-side Solutions

Vijay Modi, Columbia University

2.1MB Download

Flexible Load In Deeply Decarbonized Electricity Systems

Ben Haley, Evolved Energy Research (EER)

1.3MB Download

Utility and Comercial Demand Side Soltions

Greg Geller, EnerNOC

862KB Download

Negotiating with Batteries: The Unfortunate Tetrahedron

Dan Steingart, Princeton University

1.8MB Download

Industry Perspective: Battery Energy Storage

Chen Li, Gotion Inc.

2.2MB Download
Session C. Renewable Electricity Systems: How High Can We Go?
Title File Size

Global 100% RE Cities and Regions Network

Angie Fyfe, ICLEI

2MB Download

What we Know (and Don’t Know) About Very High Renewable Penetrations

Trieu Mai, NREL

1MB Download

100% Clean and Renewable Electricity: How Far Can We Go?

Elaine Hart, Portland General Electric

679KB Download
Session D. Autonomous and Electric Vehicles: On the Road to Deep Decarbonization?

There were no presentations for this discussion.

Session E: Alternative Energy, Nuclear and CCS: What are the Prospects?
Title File Size

Small Modular Reactors: Lowering Emissions and Enabling Growth

Lenka Kollar, NuScale Power

679KB Download

The Why and the How of FBEG (Fusion Based Electricity Generation)

Howard Hornfeld, Fusion Advocates

2.6MB Download

Carbon Waste Management

Klaus Lackner, Arizona State University

1.8MB Download

Statoil's Climate Roadmap

Bjørn Otto Sverdrup, Statoil

5.3MB Download


  • Angie Fyfe


    Angie Fyfe is the executive director of ICLEI USA and a member of ICLEI's global senior management team. Angie’s previous experience includes serving as the Associate Director of the Colorado Governor’s Energy Office, where she was part of the team to develop and implement 57 pieces of clean energy legislation under Governor Bill Ritter; as the executive director of the U.S. Green Building Council Colorado Chapter; and as a Real Estate Product Manager of global corporate relocation services firm.

  • Ben Haley

    Co-Founder, Energy Evolved Research

    Ben has unique experience developing energy system models to support energy transformation decision making. His models have been utilized by parties from the California state government to support 2030 greenhouse gas (GHG) target-setting and by the research team representing the United States in the Deep Decarbonization Pathways Project (DDPP) convened at the behest of the United Nations. He has a passion for problem-solving and a deep technical knowledge of energy, specifically in the growing interaction between electricity and other sectors of the energy economy. His education includes a masters in international environmental policy from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies and a bachelors degree in business administration from Bucknell University.

  • Bjorn Otto Sverdrup

    Senior Vice President, Corporate Sustainability, Statoil

    Bjørn Otto Sverdrup is Statoil’s Senior Vice President for Sustainability and member of the management committee in the Global Strategy and Business Development business area. Sverdrup has extensive leadership experience in Statoil. Since 2007 he has been a Vice President and member of several of Statoil’s top Management Committees, including Exploration and Development Norway, Development and Production International and most recently for the company’s North American operations in Houston, Texas. Following the 2011 terrorist attacks in Norway, Sverdrup served as chief of staff for the government-appointed commission investigating the attacks. Sverdrup also served at The Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise (NHO) as advisor and National expert to the EU Commission on corporate social responsibility. As member of the management committee of Hydro’s oil and gas division he was part of the integration planning committee for the merger between Statoil and Hydro Oil and Energy in 2007. He is a frequent speaker at key industry event such as CERA, WFES and SPE and has been a guest lecturer at Imperial College, Columbia University and Harvard Business School. Sverdrup is a deputy on the Board of Directors at Norway’s largest university, NTNU and a member of the advisory board at the master program of the Grantham Institute of the Imperial College in London. Sverdrup is a political scientist and former research fellow from the University of Oslo. He is the father of three children.

  • Chen Li

    CEO, Gotion Inc.

    Chen Li is CEO of Gotion Inc. and global R&D centers manager of Guoxuan High-tech, a global leading power battery technology company that supplies batteries for vehicles including the world’s first mass commercial e-bus line. Prior to Gotion, he worked in research with Bridging Nations Foundation and the Worldwatch Institute in Washington, DC.

  • Chris Bataille

    Researcher, Simon Fraser University

    Dr. Chris Bataille is from Vancouver, Canada and has been involved in energy and climate policy analysis for 20 years as a researcher, energy systems and economic modeller, writer, project manager, private consultant and executive. Chris is currently an Associate Researcher at the Institute for Sustainable Development and International Relations ( in Paris, was lead editor of a special issue of Climate Policy on the Deep Decarbonization Pathways Project (DDPP), helped manage the DDPP and was a co-lead of the Canadian chapter of the DDPP, including numerous follow-up policy reports. He is currently lead of the DDPP Heavy Industry Decarbonization Technology and Policy Project. He is also an Adjunct Professor at Simon Fraser University.

  • Corey Ershow

    Transportation Policy Manager, Lyft

    Corey is an attorney and policy wonk focusing on emerging technology transportation solutions. He joined Lyft in 2017 as a Transportation Policy Manager, working with government officials and other stakeholders to develop policies and promote Lyft's vision for the future of transportation. Prior to joining Lyft, Corey served as Senior Advisor to the EV Everywhere initiative at the United States Department of Energy, and before that, as Transportation Counsel to former Rep. Patrick Murphy of Florida. Corey holds a J.D. from The George Washington University Law School and a B.A from Rutgers University.

  • Dan Steingart

    Professor, Princeton

    Research in the Steingart group primarily focuses on Energy storage; metallurgical process efficiency; low cost long cycle life batteries; discrete power electronics; printed, flexible, stretchable batteries; in situ electrochemistry; power - energy control circuits and hybrid design. Prof. Steingart is the Co-Founder and President of Feasible Corp in Berkley, CA. He has previously worked as an Assistant Professor at the Energy Institute of the City University New York, a Senior Applications Engineer for Sentilla, and as the Co-Founder and CTO of Wireless Industrial Technologies. He received his PhD and MS in Materials Science and Engineering from the University of California, Berkley, and his ScB in Engineering from Brown University.

  • Daniel Buira

    Founder, Tempus Analytica

    Daniel has extensive leadership experience in the development and delivery of national climate change mitigation strategies. In 2013 he established the Low Carbon Development Directorate General within the Mexico´s Climate Change Institute (INECC), where he led the development of the INDCs, after which he become Clean Energy Director for the Mexico Low Emissions Development Program. He has served as member of the UNFCCC´s Technology Executive Committee (TEC), and has represented both Mexico and other Latin American countries in international negotiations focusing primarily on Technology and Mitigation. He had previously led the Carbon Trust´s international Innovation work, and his early career spanned strategy consulting and financial analysis in Deloitte and Monitor Group in London, UK. Daniel is co-author of “Deep Decarbonization Pathways for Mexico”, and holds a PhD in Physics from the University of Oxford.

  • Doug Kaufman

    CEO, TransLoc

    Dr. Doug Kaufman has been with TransLoc since February 2012 when he began as the general manager of products and services. He became CEO in June 2014 and began retooling the company to take advantage of the growing storm in transit technology, as well as the company’s unique capabilities and technological advantages. Since then, the team has grown considerably, the customer-base has spiked, and the company has expanded its offering from one product to five—including the first-ever transit mobile app that integrates transit with ridesharing and simplifies multi-modal travel for all. Prior to joining TransLoc, Doug founded multiple companies including clearTXT, a leading provider of mobile communication for colleges and universities, and Spring Metrics, a conversion analytics and intelligence solution. Doug was also an early team-member at Blackboard where he developed and managed a 250+ discipline-specific online educational resource center.

  • Elaine Hart

    Power Analyst, Portland General Electric

    Elaine Hart works in Integrated Resource Planning at Portland General Electric (PGE) where she specializes in resource economics, renewable integration, and energy storage evaluation. Prior to joining PGE, she was a Managing Consultant at Energy & Environmental Economics, Inc. in San Francisco, CA where she supported electric utilities, state agencies, and developers in quantifying the value of flexible resources under higher renewable penetrations and modeling technology pathways to reaching deep decarbonization goals. Dr. Hart earned a BS in Chemistry from Harvey Mudd College, and an MS in Materials Science & Engineering and PhD in Civil & Environmental Engineering from Stanford University. While at Stanford, she developed modeling techniques for exploring economic and emissions implications of achieving high penetrations of renewables.

  • Francesco Starace

    CEO, Enel

    Francesco Starace is Chief Executive Officer and General Manager of Enel S.p.A. since May 2014. Mr. Starace joined the Enel Group in 2000, holding several top executive positions including Head of Business Power (from July 2002 to October 2005) and Managing Director of the Market Division (from November 2005 to September 2008). From 2008 to 2014, he has been Chief Executive Officer and General Manager of Enel Green Power, the Group's renewable power generation subsidiary and a leading player in the global renewables industry. In November 2010, Mr. Starace led the Initial Public Offering (IPO) of the company, listing it on the Milan and Madrid stock exchanges with a market capitalization of €8 billion. Since June 2014, he is a member of the Advisory Board of the United Nations’ Sustainable Energy 4 All initiative. In May 2015, he joined the Board of Directors of the United Nations’ Global Compact. In January 2016, he was designated co-chair of the World Economic Forum's Energy Utilities and Energy Technologies Community and, in October of the same year, he was appointed co-chair of the B20 Climate & Resource Efficiency Task Force. In June 2017, he was elected President of the European electricity industry union Eurelectric. He graduated in Nuclear Engineering from the Polytechnic University of Milan. He is married and has two sons, he is a keen cyclist, a supporter of A.S. Roma football club and has a passion for poetry.

  • Grace Wu

    PhD Candidate, Energy and Resources Group, U.C. Berkeley and Researcher, Berkeley Lab

    Grace is an environmental scientist studying land use for energy, climate, and conservation needs. In geographies as diverse as California, India, and South Africa, energy systems are on the cusp or in the midst of major transitions from conventional to renewable technologies. By examining the extent and the location of trade-offs between different land use drivers, Grace is identifying areas that yield climate and conservation win-win solutions. Grace co-founded the Multi-criteria Analysis for Planning Renewable Energy (MapRE) initiative, through a collaboration between Berkeley Lab and the International Renewable Energy Agency. MapRE seeks to enable and improve the planning of low-carbon, cost-effective, socially and environmentally responsible energy systems. Through collaboration with The Nature Conservancy, Grace developed a spatial model to understand land-use constraints associated with renewable energy systems planning in California, which led to regulatory improvements that simultaneously advance conservation and climate goals. Grace continues to advise the California Energy Program at The Nature Conservancy in assessing land use impacts of ambitious renewable energy targets. She is also a technical adviser to the Energy Sector Management Assistance Program at the World Bank, which is currently using the MapRE tool for planning solar and wind projects in Vietnam, Afghanistan, and India. Previously, Grace worked at the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) leading a project to understand climate change impacts on an endangered butterfly in the Great Lakes region. She holds a BA in Biology from Pomona College, MPhil in Evolutionary Biology from University of Cambridge, and an MS in Energy and Resources from UC Berkeley.

  • Greg Geller

    Director, Regulatory & Government Affairs, EnerNOC

    Greg leads EnerNOC’s regulatory and government engagement throughout much of North America at both the state and federal level, advocating for policies and regulatory constructs that leverage the behind-the-meter flexibility of end-use customers to achieve optimal grid outcomes. He manages a team responsible for Canada and ISO-New England, and has direct responsibility for the NYISO and several states in the northeast and Midwest. Before joining EnerNOC in 2010, Greg received his MBA from Boston University, and interned at Deepwater Wind, doing business development while earning is degree.

  • Guido Schmidt-Traub

    Executive Director, SDSN

    Guido Schmidt-Traub is Executive Director of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network. He has served as climate change advisor to the Africa Progress Panel secretariat and was CEO of Paris-based CDC Climat Asset Management, an investment company regulated by the French financial markets regulator. From 2008-2010 Guido was Director and Partner at South Pole Carbon Asset Management in Zurich, a leading developer of greenhouse gas emission projects. Prior to managing the MDG Support Team at UNDP (2006-2008) he served as Policy Advisor and then as Associate Director of the UN Millennium Project in New York, which was tasked with developing a concrete action plan for the world to achieve the Millennium Development Goals. Earlier Guido was Partner at IndexIT Scandinavia, a private equity fund for early-stage technology companies, and consultant at McKinsey & Company in Germany. Guido holds an M.Phil. in Economics from Oxford University (Rhodes Scholar) and a Masters in physical chemistry from the Free University Berlin. He resides in Paris with his family.

  • Howard Hornfeld

    Founder and President, Fusion Advocates, Geneva, Switzerland

    Howard holds a BS in Chemistry from MIT, an MA from the Univ. California and a D.Sc. from the Univ. Sussex (UK). Howard has many years of experience in fusion energy research. From 2007 to present he has served as the Founder and President of Fusion Advocates. Fusion Advocates’ goal is prove that fusion-based NET electricity can be produced from a classical or spherical tokamak, using proven technologies on a "small-scale" (100MW), super-conducting magnetics, tritium-breeding and balance-of-plant.

  • Jason Babbie

    Deputy Director, Urban Solutions & Strategic Program Development, NRDC

    Jason Babbie leads the creation of scalable municipal-level initiatives while managing cross-programmatic work, findings, and communications. His main objective is to help build strong, just, and resilient communities that provide climate change solutions. Prior to joining NRDC, Babbie designed and managed the Vibrant Oceans Initiative and developed and managed the domestic components of the Sustainable Cities Initiative at Bloomberg Philanthropies. He also served as the membership services program director at the Environmental Grantmakers Association and directed a variety of successful environmental campaigns for the New York Public Interest Research Group and Environmental Advocates of New York. He was an adjunct professor at Pace University and consultant to the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management. He is currently a member of the Advisory Council of the Ocean Foundation. Babbie holds a bachelor’s degree in environmental studies from the State University of New York, College of Environmental Science and Forestry/Syracuse University and a master’s degree in environmental policy from Brown University. He is based in New York City.

  • Jean-Philippe Hermine

    VP Environment Strategy & Planning, Renault

    Born in 1964, Jean Philippe Hermine is an engineer-geologist of the Ecole Nationale Supérieure De Géologie of Nancy. He entered Renault in 1996 to lead the global environmental audit in context of restructuring plan and transactions of the group (RVI, Volvo, Dacia, Samsung), he became in 2000 manager of the performance animation of the industrial environment network on the theme of soils, air emission and wastes. In 2004, he has joined the direction of the environment plan to coordinate the setting of the recycling policy and of the innovating and strategic partnerships prospects. In 2009 he is appointed chief of the service “Energie, Hygiène, Sécurité et Environnement” for the whole Renault Group in the world. Since the 1st of July 2011, he is Director Strategy Environment Plan of the Group and CEO of Renault Environnement.

  • Jean-Pierre Maugendre

    Sustainable Development Deputy Manager, SUEZ

    Graduate of Ecole Centrale Paris and Institut d'Etudes Politiques de Paris, Jean Pierre Maugendre joined Suez Group (at that time Lyonnaise des Eaux Group) in 1992. Having occupied several operational and functional management positions in the Group, he has been appointed in January 2014 Sustainable development deputy manager at SUEZ Sustainable development division, in charge of CSR performance and climate change Group's policy.

  • Jeffrey Sachs

    Director, SDSN

    Jeffrey D. Sachs is a world-renowned professor of economics, leader in sustainable development, senior UN advisor, bestselling author, and syndicated columnist whose monthly newspaper columns appear in more than 100 countries. He is the co-recipient of the 2015 Blue Planet Prize, the leading global prize for environmental leadership. He has twice been named among Time Magazine’s 100 most influential world leaders. He was called by the New York Times, “probably the most important economist in the world,” and by Time Magazine “the world’s best known economist.” A recent survey by The Economist Magazine ranked Professor Sachs as among the world’s three most influential living economists of the past decade. Professor Sachs served as the Director of the Earth Institute from 2002 to 2016. He was appointed University Professor at Columbia University in 2016, and also serves as Quetelet Professor of Sustainable Development, and Professor of Health Policy and Management at Columbia University. He is Special Advisor to United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on the Sustainable Development Goals, and previously advised both UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan on the Millennium Development Goals. He is a Distinguished Fellow of the International Institute of Applied Systems Analysis in Laxenburg, Austria. Sachs is Director of both the Center for Sustainable Development, and the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network under the auspices of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. Prior to joining Columbia, Sachs spent over twenty years as a professor at Harvard University, most recently as the Galen L. Stone Professor of International Trade. A native of Detroit, Michigan, Sachs received his B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. degrees at Harvard.

  • Jim Williams

    Associate Professor in Energy Systems, University of San Francisco

    Jim Williams is Associate Professor in Energy Systems at the University of San Francisco, and director of the Deep Decarbonization Pathways Project (DDPP) for the Sustainable Development Solutions Network. A pioneer in the development of technically sophisticated long-term planning for the transition to a low carbon economy, he is the lead author of Pathways to Deep Decarbonization the United States and Policy Implications of Deep Decarbonization in the United States, which were key inputs to the Obama Administration’s Mid-Century Strategy for Deep Decarbonization, the Risky Business coalition’s From Risk to Return: Investing in a Clean Energy Economy, and NRDC’s America’s Clean Energy Frontier. Previously, as chief scientist of the San Francisco consulting firm E3, Jim led similar studies of California that underlie key state and private sector energy and climate strategies. Jim received his B.S. in Physics from Washington and Lee University, and his Ph.D. in Energy and Resources from U.C. Berkeley.

  • Klaus Lackner

    Director, Center for Negative Carbon Emissions, Arizona State University

    Dr. Klaus Lackner is the director of Center for Negative Carbon Emissions and professor at the School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment of the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering, Arizona State University. Lackner’s research interests include closing the carbon cycle by capturing carbon dioxide from the air, carbon sequestration, carbon foot-printing, innovative energy and infrastructure systems and their scaling properties, the role of automation, robotics and mass-manufacturing in downscaling infrastructure systems, and energy and environmental policy. Lackner’s scientific career started in the phenomenology of weakly interacting particles. Later searching for quarks, he and George Zweig developed the chemistry of atoms with fractional nuclear charge. After joining Los Alamos National Laboratory, Lackner became involved in hydrodynamic work and fusion related research. In recent years, he has published on the behavior of high explosives, novel approaches to inertial confinement fusion, and numerical algorithms. His interest in self-replicating machine systems has been recognized by Discover Magazine as one of seven ideas that could change the world. Trained as a theoretical physicist, he has made a number of contributions to the field of carbon capture and storage since 1995, including early work on the sequestration of carbon dioxide in silicate minerals and zero emission power plant design. In 1999, he was the first person to suggest the artificial capture of carbon dioxide from air in the context of carbon management. His recent work at Columbia University as Director of the Lenfest Center for Sustainable Energy advanced innovative approaches to energy issues of the future and the pursuit of environmentally acceptable technologies for the use of fossil fuels.

  • Laurence Tubiana

    CEO, European Climate Foundation

    Laurence Tubiana is CEO of the European Climate Foundation. She is also the Chair of the Board of Governors at the French Development Agency (AFD) and a Professor at Sciences Po, Paris. Before joining the ECF, Laurence was France’s Climate Change Ambassador and Special Representative for COP21, and as such a key architect of the landmark Paris Agreement. Following COP21, she was appointed High Level Champion for climate action. Laurence brings decades of expertise and experience in climate change, energy, agriculture and sustainable development, working across government, think tanks, NGOs and academia. Laurence has held several academic positions, including as a Professor and Scientific Director for the International Development and Environmental Studies Master degrees at Sciences Po, Paris, and Professor of International Affairs at Columbia University, New York. She has been member of numerous boards and scientific committees, including the Chinese Committee on the Environment and International Development.

  • Lenka Kollar

    Director, NuScale Power

    Lenka Kollar is the Director of Business Strategy at NuScale Power where she is working to bring NuScale’s small modular reactor to market through business plan development and clean energy outreach. She has been invited to speak on energy innovation and the potential of small modular reactors to provide electricity and clean water in a variety of different forums, such as the CleanTech Forum in San Francisco and the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP22) in Morocco. Previously, Ms. Kollar was an Associate Communication Officer at the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) where she handled external and internal communication for the Department of Nuclear Energy. Prior to that, she consulted with public and private sector organizations on nuclear energy policy, public communications, and marketing strategy, along with writing an informational nuclear energy blog called Nuclear Undone. Ms. Kollar also served as a technical associate in non-proliferation policy at the U.S. National Nuclear Security Administration and at Argonne National Laboratory. Ms. Kollar obtained her Bachelor of Science in 2009 and Master of Science in 2012 in Nuclear Engineering from Purdue University and Master of Business Administration (MBA) from INSEAD in France, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates in 2015. She has been extensively involved with the American Nuclear Society for several years, serving in various committee and executive positions focusing on nonproliferation and public outreach

  • Lew Fulton

    Director, STEPS (Sustainable Transportation Energy Pathways), UC Davis ITS

    Lewis Fulton has worked internationally in the field of transport/energy/environment analysis and policy development for over 20 years. He is Co-Director of the STEPS Program within the Institute of Transportation Studies at the University of California, Davis. There he helps lead a range of research activities around new vehicle technologies and new fuels, and how these can gain rapid acceptance in the market. From 2007-2012 he was a Senior Transport Specialist with the International Energy Agency, Paris, as well as Division Head for Energy Technology Policy during 2011-2012. He returned to the IEA in 2007 after working there originally from 1999-2005. During 2006-2007 he worked in Kenya with the UN Environment Program, developing and implementing GEF-funded sustainable transport projects around the world. During the 1990s he also worked at the US Department of Energy for 4 years, and taught at the Independent University of Bangladesh and the University of Maryland.

  • Margaret Torn

    Professor, UC Berkeley

    Margaret S. Torn is Senior Advisor in the Climate and Ecosystem Sciences Division (CESD) and lead of the Biosphere-Atmosphere Interactions Program Domain, which includes the Atmospheric Systems Research and Terrestrial Ecosystems Science programs. Margaret co-led the former Climate and Carbon Sciences Program Area in the old Earth Sciences Division. She is lead PI for three large DOE-supported projects: AmeriFlux Management Project, Belowground Carbon Cycling Scientific Focus Area, and Land-Atmosphere Interactions, and is co-PI for the Next Generation Ecosystem Experiment in the Arctic. At U.C. Berkeley, Margaret is an Adjunct Professor in the Energy and Resources Group, where she has taught classes on climate change impacts and adaptation, and a seminar on food systems. In 2003 she received the Presidential Early Career Award as one of the country’s top young scientists and was recently awarded an honorary doctorate by the faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences at the University of Zurich. Margaret is an ecologist and biogeochemist who studies the natural carbon cycle and human impacts on the carbon cycle through land use, energy use, and climate change. Her research uses field experiments, isotopic tracers (14C, 13C), laboratory analysis, and mathematical models. She has published more than 100 peer-reviewed articles on topics ranging from the basic mechanisms of soil carbon cycling and ecosystem-climate feedbacks, to ecological aspects of bioenergy production, to strategies for climate-change mitigation.

  • Meg Argyriou

    Acting CEO & Head of Engagement, ClimateWorks

    Meg is leading ClimateWorks’ new work program in the Asia Pacific region, and also leads efforts to ‘mainstream’ the net zero emissions opportunity across business, government and civil society in Australia. Meg led the development of a number of sub-national low carbon growth plans and has co-authored several ClimateWorks reports. Meg previously worked in government, managing funding programs focused on capacity building. She also worked for the International Energy Agency, supporting working parties focused on energy efficiency, renewables and clean technology transfer. Meg holds an MBA with a specialisation in Environmental Sustainability.

  • Michael Shank

    Director of Communications, SDSN

    Michael Shank, Ph.D., is Head of Communications for the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network in New York City, where he handles communications for Professor Jeffrey Sachs and SDSN’s work on the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. Michael’s recent positions include serving as Director of Media Strategy at Climate Nexus, Associate Director for Legislative Affairs at the Friends Committee on National Legislation, and US Congressman Michael Honda’s Senior Policy Advisor and Communications Director. Michael’s Ph.D. from George Mason University’s School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution is on Climate Conflict. Michael is Adjunct Assistant Professor at New York University’s Center for Global Affairs, Adjunct Faculty and a Board Member at George Mason University’s School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, and Senior Fellow at the JustJobs Network. Michael is a former columnist for the Washington Post and US News & World Report and a regular contributor to USA Today, The Guardian, TIME Magazine, MSNBC, Fortune, and Fast Company.

  • Noah Kaufman

    Economist, WRI

    Noah is an economist for WRI’s Global Climate Program and the New Climate Economy (NCE) Initiative. The focuses of his work are carbon pricing and other cost-effective climate policies, the economic impacts of climate policies and climate change, and long-term decarbonization strategies. In 2016, Noah served as the Deputy Associate Director of Energy & Climate Change at the White House Council on Environmental Quality. At the White House, Noah was the day-to-day manager of the inter-agency group effort to produce the United States Mid-Century Strategy for Deep Decarbonization. Previously, Noah was a Senior Consultant at the Environment Practice of NERA Economic Consulting. He specialized on projects related to the economics of environmental and energy policies, as well as evaluating the impacts to the economy and to the electricity grid of infrastructure investments and energy policies. Noah has published peer-reviewed journal articles on the topics of the social cost of carbon dioxide emissions, the role of risk aversion in environmental policy evaluations, and the design of incentives to support green consumer products and energy-efficiency programs run by electric and gas utilities. Noah received his BS in economics, cum laude, from Duke University, and his PhD and MS in economics, with a concentration on energy and environmental economics, from the University of Texas at Austin, where his dissertation examined optimal policy responses to climate change.

  • Rachel Slaybaugh

    Assistant Professor of Nuclear Engineering, University of California, Berkeley

    Rachel Slaybaugh is an Assistant Professor of Nuclear Engineering at the University of California, Berkeley. At Berkeley, Prof. Slaybaugh's research program is based in computational methods and applied to existing and advanced nuclear reactors, nuclear non-proliferation and security, and shielding applications. Slaybaugh is currently serving as a Program Director at ARPA-E. She is also a Senior Fellow at the Breakthrough Institute and at the Berkeley Institute of Data Science. At Berkeley, Prof. Slaybaugh is developing programs to train and inspire the next generation to innovate in clean energy, including the Nuclear Innovation Bootcamp.

  • Rasmus Valanko

    Director, Climate & Energy, WBCSD

    Rasmus Valanko is a manager for Climate & Energy with the Geneva-based World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD). In this role he coordinates private sector cooperation aiming to create and scale-up business solutions across the main mitigation levers and resilience building measures. Rasmus has a Masters in Environment, Politics and Globalization from King’s College London. He began his career working for the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Environment of Finland both in overseas development cooperation and multilateral environmental treaties. Prior to joining the WBCSD, Rasmus worked 7 years for Royal Dutch Shell on global climate change and CO2 policy as well as their alternative energies strategy. Given his background, Rasmus has deep knowledge in the critical technologies required for the transformation of energy supply and demand, with the ability to translate between technical and policy worlds.

  • Raymond Johansen

    Governing Mayor, City of Oslo

    In October 2015 Raymond Johansen started his term as Governing Mayor of Oslo. Oslo is one of the fastest growing cities in Europe. The capital is a green city with a unique access to nature, pulsating cultural life, great academic institutions and a business community full of initiative. Governing Mayor Johansen has very ambitious goals for the future development of Oslo, ensuring a vibrant, green and climate-smart city with equal opportunities for everyone. Johansen is educated as a plumber, but most of his working life has been dedicated to politics. At the age of 30 he was appointed to the City Government in Oslo as Vice Mayor for Transport and Nature Preservation, then representing the Socialist Left Party. Since joining the Norwegian Labour Party in 1997 Governing Mayor Johansen has served as State Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs under both Cabinets of Jens Stoltenberg. Johansen served as the Secretary General of the Labour Party from 2009 until 2015 when he resigned to run for Governing Mayor of Oslo.

  • Said Mouline

    Director, Moroccan Agency of Development for Renewable Energies and Energy Efficiency (ADEREE)

    Said Mouline is a specialized engineer in the areas of Environmental Protection. He has graduated from the Grenoble National Polytechnic Institute and the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. Former Advisor in Sustainable Development for the Chairman of OCP Group and the Minister of Energy and Mines in 1989, he joined the Renewable Energy Development Center (CDER) in 1992 as a Scientific and Technical Director. Said mouline has also held several positions of responsibility within the group, always in the field of Energy and Environment, and was in charge of the program Qualitair the Mohammed VI Foundation for the Protection of the Environment. Appointed by His Majesty King Mohammed VI, General Director of CDER March 6, 2009, he is since 2010, Director General of the National Agency for the Development of Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ADEREE).

  • Tor Henrik Anderse

    Political Adviser to the Governing Mayor of Oslo, City of Oslo

    Tor-Henrik Andersen is political adviser to Governing Mayor Raymond Johansen and is his deputy at the Office of the Governing Mayor. Andersen represents the Labour Party and was also adviser to Mr. Johansen when he was the Secretary General of the Norwegian Labour Party. His portfolio at the Office of the Governing Mayor includes international relations, regional affairs, Climate and environmental affairs as well as transportation, urban development and strategic communication. Tor-Henrik Andersen is educated in Economics and Administration and Training to the Norwegian Diplomatic Services. He has been in diplomatic service for many years focusing on the relations to countries as the Horn of Africa, aid and energy and renewable resources.

  • Trieu Mai

    Scientist, NREL

    Dr. Trieu Mai is a Senior Energy Analyst in the Strategic Energy Analysis Center at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). Since joining NREL in 2009, Trieu has authored and contributed to several electric sector studies encompassing a broad range of topics, including renewable grid integration, clean energy policy, economic and environmental impacts, and research studies that assess the possibilities for and feasibility of high renewable electricity futures. Trieu was one of the technical leads on the Wind Vision study (2015) and the Renewable Electricity Futures study (2012); the latter examined scenarios with 80% renewable electricity in the United States. He has led or contributed to over 50 reports and journal articles. His primary research interests include energy-economic modeling, renewable grid integration, electrification, and environmental policy. Before joining NREL, Trieu worked in the field of intellectual property law and he holds a Ph.D. in theoretical physics from the University of California Santa Cruz.

  • Vidar Helgesen

    Minister of Climate and Environment, Norway

    Vidar Helgesen was born in Bodø in the County of Nordland on 21 November 1968, and grew up at Nøtterøy in the County of Vestfold. Helgesen holds the Cand. Jur. Degree from the University of Oslo in 1998. Helgesen was state secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs 2001-2005, under Kjell Magne Bondevik's Second Government. Helgesen was a special adviser at the International Red Cross in Geneva 1998–2001. He was secretary-general of the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA), in Stockholm from 2006 until he started as minister in 2013. Helgesen was minister of EEA and EU Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Chief of Staff at the Office of the Prime Minister from October 2013 to December 2015.

  • Vijay Modi

    Professor of Mechanical Engineering, Earth Institute, Columbia University

    Vijay Modi is a professor of mechanical engineering at Columbia University and an Earth Institute faculty member. He also lead the UN Millennium Project effort on the role of energy and energy services in reaching the Millennium Development Goals (MDG’s). Currently, he is focused on making consumer-scaled versions of technology that is normally supersized available to developing countries. Vijay Modi received a B. Tech. in mechanical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology (Mumbai, India) in 1978, and he received his Ph.D. from Cornell University in 1984. He pursued postdoctoral research at MIT from 1984 to 1986. He has been a professor of mechanical engineering at Columbia since 1986, and a member of the Earth Institute faculty since 2006. His expertise is in the fields of energy sources and conversion, heat/mass transfer, and fluid mechanics. Previously, he led the UN Millennium Project effort on the role of energy and energy services in reaching the Millennium Development Goals. Currently, he is focused on three projects: leading the infrastructure team for the Millennium Villages Project (10 countries, 14 sites across sub-Saharan Africa), developing planning and decision-support tools for infrastructure, and looking at the food-energy-water nexus in Indian agriculture. Modi also works on projects in water (with fellow Earth Institute faculty member Upmanu Lall), urban infrastructure (through the IGERT program led by fellow Earth Institute faculty member Patricia Culligan), and optics of concentrated solar and software systems for m-health with lab colleague Matt Berg. He has authored or co-authored numerous journal papers and served as the principal or co-principal of a number of research grants from government and industry.

  • William Horak

    Chair of the Department of Nuclear Science and Technology, Brookhaven National Laboratory

    The Nuclear Science and Technology Department conducts research and development related to nuclear technologies (reactors and accelerator-driven systems), reliability and risk assessment, and advanced modeling techniques for reactor simulation and energy systems. Horak has a B.S. in aeronautical and astronautical engineering and an M.S. and a Ph.D. in nuclear engineering from the University of Illinois. He is an internationally recognized expert on energy issues and has served on numerous boards, committees, and panels, both in the U.S. and for international organizations, such as the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. Since coming to Brookhaven in 1979 as an assistant nuclear engineer, Horak has served as group leader for the International Projects Division for the then-Department of Nuclear Energy and head of the Energy and Nuclear Technology Division of the Department of Advanced Technology. He had a lead role in the Department of Energy's activities in response to the Chernobyl accident, including evaluations of Soviet-designed facilities. He has implemented and managed numerous programs in nuclear safety, international safeguards, and energy-system development. In his current position, Horak initiated new research programs on materials for extreme environments, hydrogen storage, and advanced battery design.