Connect with us


FT Global Energy Leaders Summit 2012: the speakers



Tomorrow sees the Financial Times (FT) Global Energy Leaders Summit 2012, a two-day event that aims to work out how to tackle the world’s energy challenges, get underway in London.

Taking place at the Millennium Hotel in Mayfair, a wide variety of names – from politicians to cleantech investors – are due to make speeches to the prestigious line-up of attendees.

Blue & Green Tomorrow will be attending the event, and in anticipation of its opening, has compiled a list of some of the speakers that we’re especially excited in hearing from.

Keynote speakers

Adnan Amin, director general of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA)

Kenyan development economist Adnan Amin has been the director general of IRENA, one of the world’s leading intergovernmental renewable energy organisations, since April 2011. Boasting over 20 years’ experience in sustainable development, having occupied a number of roles within the United Nations, he’s one of the foremost global voices on clean energy policy, research and implementation.

Fulvio Conti, chief executive officer and general manager at Enel and president of Eurelectric

Enel is one of the largest power companies in Europe with an annual turnover of over £60 billion, and Conti has been chief executive officer since 2005. As president of Eurelectric, the trade association for the European electrical power industry, the Italian is held in high regard by the continent’s energy sector.

José Ignacio Sánchez Galán, chairman and chief executive officer at Iberdrola

Galán has been chairman and chief executive officer at Spanish utility company Iberdrola since May 2006, and after the company’s acquisition of Scottish Power a year later, became chairman of the Glasgow-based company, too. He was recently named as the seventh most influential Spanish businessman by network operator Orange.

Alex Salmond MP, the first minister of Scotland

Salmond became first minister of Scotland in 2007 – the first Scottish National Party (SNP) candidate to be elected to the role. He has been at the forefront of the country’s admirable progress and innovation in renewable energy, which centres predominantly on offshore wind and marine technology.

Other selected speakers

Jeremy Leggett, founder and non-executive chairman at Solarcentury

Leggett founded solar developers Solarcentury in 1998, and is one of the UK’s foremost commentators on the technology. Solarcentury has over 1,000 large and many more domestic installations to its name, with its total installed capacity well over six megawatt-peak.

Lars Bording, CEO at Clever

Clever has an incredibly innovative business model for electric vehicle (EV) charging, and is trying to grow the market for EVs in Denmark. Bording is the company’s CEO and believes that EVs will be his country’s “preferred mode of transport” in just a decade – bold claims, but given the Scandinavian’s pioneering outlook in green energy, it’s certainly possible.

William J. Sims, president and CEO at Joule

Joule is an American company developing alternative, next generation transport fuels. Its website says it is “advancing a platform for renewable fuel and chemical production that is expected to eclipse the scale, productivity and cost efficiency of any known alternative to fossil fuel today”, and its CEO and president, Sims, has over three decades experience in his field.

Ben Goldsmith, partner at WHEB Group

Goldsmith, whose brother is Conservative MP Zac and father was financier, politician and publisher Sir James, founded clean technology fund managers WHEB in 2002. The group’s Sustainability Fund, which invests in technologies that help tackle climate change, global water shortages and clean energy amongst other things, is one of the most popular green funds on the market. He appeared as one of Blue & Green Tomorrow’s Green Dragons in 2011.

James Cameron, chairman at Climate Change Capital

Cameron is chairman at Climate Change Capital, an investment manager and advisory group. He spoke at the Sustainable Finance Conference; an event put on in June by the FT in association with the International Finance Corporation, and is widely recognised as one of the leading names in the UK sustainable finance sector.

Martin Lidegaard, Danish minister of climate, energy and building

Another driving force in Denmark’s green energy push, Lidegaard was appointed as the country’s minister of climate, energy and building in 2011. He has been at the forefront of its pledge to become 100% renewable by 2050, and continues to back the adoption of clean power.

Oliver Griffiths, executive director of the UK Green Investment Bank team at the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills

Griffiths is leading the team that is setting up the government’s Green Investment Bank, a £3 billion scheme aimed at pushing the UK towards a greener economy. The bank recently announced it was close to finalising its Edinburgh headquarters and also revealed that the first wave of funding would go towards 20 “big ticket” deals.

Further reading:

FT Global Energy Leaders’ Summit 2012: preview

Blue & Green Tomorrow is crowdfunding its next three reports. Help support us at