Opinion

Building Back Better: Climate Crisis, Oil Price Crash and Covid-19


Stakeholder pressure, falling unit costs, a heightened sense of moral and social responsibility (perhaps) - if you had asked observers six months ago to list the factors they deemed responsible for driving the energy transition, these are, inter alia, the responses you may have received. Whilst the varying importance of the converging forces behind the recent surge in net-zero commitments has and will continue to be debated, one thing is for sure - a global health crisis would not have been top of the list.

The global pandemic currently gripping our world has brought untold devastation to millions of people, striking deep on both the economic and social foundations of modern society. Emergency measures aimed at preventing the spread of the virus have, rightly, placed the well-being of individuals at centre stage. With countries locked down and economies having ground to a halt; entire industries have been left in flux. The energy sector is held tightly within the grip of Covid-19. With geopolitical tensions providing further convulsions, crashing energy demand, plummeting oil price and workforce shutdown has left our sector on life support.

This crisis heeded no warning. That said, as we begin to settle into ‘crisis, as normal', it is vital that we do not ignore the greater threat on the horizon. Lockdown has allowed our planet to breath. Energy transition must now be placed at the centre of all plans for economic revival.

Reuters Events' virtual ‘Build Back Better Symposium' (July 9th – 14:00 - 17:00 BST) will explore how companies are adapting through crisis and explore how industry can ensure climate recovery is placed at the forefront of plans for economic recovery post Covid-19.

Registration for the Symposium is free, you can sign up here

Some observers have begun to suggest that the pandemic may have ‘fast-tracked' the transition and that the current crisis may be the catalyst needed to avoid a yet greater threat on the horizon. Indeed, with global oil demand down 30%, countries totting up their ‘coal-free days' and renewable energy expected to grow 5% this year, we are realising an energy mix that we did not expect to see this decade. Join the symposium to hear Fiona Reynolds, (CEO United Nations PRI), Dr. Arunabha Ghosh (CEO, Council on Energy, Environment & Water) Jennifer Layke (Global Director, Energy, World Resource Institute) and Nigel Topping (UK High Level Climate Action Champion) to explore these themes in detail!

Will we look back at 2019 as the year of peak oil demand? What does this mean for companies in transition, how will it affect first-mover advantage, and how can O&G companies pivot through crisis to ensure better-business, rather than business-as-usual? Join Reuters Events and Carbon Trust CEO, Tom Delay, as they explore the future of O&G within the build better context. As industry looks to press ahead with transition, we must remain aware of the opportunities of regulatory reform and financial interventions whilst remaining vigilant for crisis opportunism. Explore what data-driven analysis can tell us about the parallels being drawn on climate crisis and the pandemic with Dylan Tanner, CEO of InfluenceMap.

Ultimately, will it be possible to see make clean energy the agent for recovery? As governments promise billions in financial stimulus packages, how can we ensure that clean energy provides the power for recovery? How can we continue to grow established renewable sectors whilst delivering money for new innovations? Debate how and where this money should be spent to enable crisis planning through crisis recovery with Camilla Palladino (EVP Strategy & Investor Relations, Snam), Axel Thiemann (CEO, Sonnedix), Guloren Turan (General Manager – Advocacy, Global CCS Institute), Adam Bruce (Global Head of Corporate, Mainstream Renewable Power)

Reflect upon a morning of debate and discussion and have your say through this interactive Q&A and live polling session. Join us on July 9th to tackle the crisis head on, progress the energy transition and strategize ways that we can Build Back Better!

Registration for the Symposium is free, you can sign up here

 



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