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Race to Net Zero in Asia-Pacific

Sep 8 2021, 06:00 BST - Sep 8 2021, 09:00 BST

Sep 8 2021, 14:00 KST - Sep 8 2021, 17:00 KST

Asia-Pacific is one of the most vulnerable regions to the impacts of climate change and so we must incorporate forward thinking solutions which enable countries in the region to mitigate climate change and ensure sustainable development. 

With that in mind, we are co-hosting Race to Net Zero in Asia-Pacific, an event organised in collaboration with the Government of Chungnam, South Korea on Wednesday 8 September, 14:00-17:00 KST.

Race to Net Zero in Asia-Pacific will explore the current barriers and opportunities of mid and long-term targets towards net zero in the region and understand from leading experts how best to strengthen initiatives of public governance towards coal phaseout, carbon neutrality and achieving the energy transition.

During the event, we’ll be hearing from an esteemed line-up of speakers from global businesses and governments, including:

Introduction and welcome remarks

  • Governor Yang Seung-jo, Under2 Coalition Asia-Pacific Co-Chair
  • Helen Clarkson, CEO, Climate Group 
  • Premier Sihle Zikalala, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Secretary Jared Blumenfeld, California
  • Michael Reiffenstuel, German Ambassador to Korea
  • Federico Failla, Italian Ambassador to Korea

Keynote address

  • Ban Ki-Moon, Former Secretary General of the United Nations

Panel: Net zero leadership in state and regional governments

Moderated by: Tim Ash Vie, Director of the Under2 Coalition

Panellists:

  • Kate Wilson, Executive Director Climate Change and Sustainability, New South Wales, Australia
  • Anna Lising, Senior Policy Advisor Climate and Energy, Washington State
  • Nam-Jae Lee, Director General of Climate and Environment Bureau, Chungchungnam-do, Republic of Korea
  • Mark Rodrigues, Executive Director for Climate Change, Government of Victoria

Video message: Raffaele Cattaneo, Minister for Climate and Environment, Government of Lombardy

Panel: Energy transition - Risks to opportunities 

Moderated by: Sam Kimmins, Head of RE100, Climate Group 

Panellists:

  • Kwanghee Yeom, Senior Associate, South Korea, Agora Energiewende
  • Gu-Yoon Chung, Head of Business Development, Asia-Pacific region, Enel Green Power (EGP)
  • Mellisa Hamilton, Country Sustainability Manager, IKEA Australia
  • Joojin Kim, Managing Director and Founder of Solutions for Our Climate (SFOC)
  • Jiyong Eom, Associate Professor at KAIST College of Business and Head of KAIST Graduate School of Green Growth
  • Daniel Kim, CEO, Ark Energy Corporation Pty Ltd

 

Find out about our panellists

Net zero leadership in state and regional governments

Anna Lising, Senior Policy Advisor Climate and Energy, Washington State

Anna Lising recently joined the Governor Jay Inslee’s office as his Senior Energy Policy Advisor. Anna has 15 years of experience advancing clean energy from the public, private, and NGO sectors. She has held leadership roles in cleantech startups and recently led Washington, DC’s carbon neutrality efforts – developing policies and programs to accelerate clean energy production in a way that centers environmental and economic justice. Anna holds a Masters degree in Public Policy from Georgetown University and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Washington.

Nam-Jae Lee, Director General of Climate and Environment Bureau, Chungchungnam-do, Republic of Korea

Nam-Jae Lee has been the Director General of Climate and Environment Bureau since early 2021, which promotes carbon neutrality in Chungcheongnam-do and strives to cope with climate change. He has been working as a government official for 40 years, mostly in the construction and transportation sector. While working as the Director General, he expanded the policy of “Coal Phase-out Vault” to assess whether they invested in coal phase-out and renewable energy when selecting associated banks in charge of finance for public institutions.

In 2020, 56 organizations participated in the policy, and now, a total of 68 are taking part in the policy by adding 12. In preparing for the 2021 International Conference on Coal Phase-out and Carbon-Neutral & Preemptive Response to Climate Crisis, he is also working with experts at home and abroad to discuss climate crisis response and to spread various policies for coal phase-out.

Energy transition - Risks to opportunities 

Chungnam event speakers

Kwanghee Yeom, Senior Associate, South Korea, Agora Energiewende

Kwanghee Yeom started as a Renewable Energy Campaigner at Friends of the Earth Korea from 2002 to 2007. After completing his Master in energy systems and management at University of Flensburg, Germany, and his Dr. Phil. in political science at the Free University of Berlin, Germany, he worked for the Seoul Metropolitan Energy Corporation as Senior Researcher from 2016 until June 2017, and served as Assistant Secretary to the President for Climate and Environment at the Office of the President of the Republic of South Korea from June 2017 to July 2020.

Gu-Yoon Chung, Head of Business Development, Asia-Pacific region, Enel Green Power (EGP)

Gu-Yoon oversaw the EGP’s entry into India in 2015, leading the successful award of 2 GW of projects, and led the acquisition of the largest ready-to-build solar PV project in Australia in 2017. Under Gu-Yoon’s stewardship, the EGP Asia Pacific business development team is actively expanding in these markets as well as scouting the opening of other markets in the region including Korea and Vietnam. Recently, Gu-Yoon has also been appointed as the sole Managing Director of EGP Korea that was recently established in July 2020. Gu-Yoon joined Enel in 2007 and has worked in its U.S. and Rome offices.

Mr. Chung graduated from Seoul National University with a bachelor’s degree in international relations. He also received an MPA from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

Mellisa Hamilton, Country Sustainability Manager, IKEA Australia

Mellisa has more than 20 years’ experience for IKEA across various countries including Canada, Japan and Australia.  In September 2019, Mellisa was appointed Country Sustainability Manager, responsible for the delivery of the IKEA People & Planet Strategy for 2030 throughout all units within IKEA Australia (including the upcoming market of New Zealand).

Mellisa and her team work with all functions throughout the business to help communicate, set and deliver the overarching strategy which covers three focus areas:

  • Healthy & Sustainable living – inspiring and enabling more than 1 billion people to live a better everyday life within the limits of the planet  
  • Circular & Climate Positive – transforming into a circular business and becoming climate positive by reducing more greenhouse gas emissions than the IKEA value chain emits, reducing the climate footprint of IKEA products and operations in absolute terms  
  • Fair and Equal – creating positive social impact for everyone across the IKEA value chain and in all areas of the IKEA business.

Joojin Kim, Managing Director and Founder of Solutions for Our Climate (SFOC)

Joojin Kim is Managing Director and Founder of Solutions for Our Climate (SFOC), a Seoul based climate advocacy group focusing on preventing new coal power plants both within Korea and internationally, phasing out coal power within Korea and promoting renewable energy. Joojin has over ten years of experience with the international climate change regime, including experience serving as member of the delegation of the Republic of Korea to the 2009 United Nations Climate Change Conference. More recently, he served as member of the Working Group for Korea’s Third Energy Framework Plan and as member of the Advisory Panel of the National Council on Climate and Air Quality of Korea led by Ban Ki-Moon. He also briefly worked for the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF). Joojin received his LL.M. from Georgetown University Law Center and master’s degree and bachelor’s degree from Seoul National University.

Jiyong Eom, Associate Professor at KAIST College of Business and Head of KAIST Graduate School of Green Growth 

Jiyong's research interest includes energy & environmental economics and management, integrated assessment modeling for climate policy analysis, and demand-side management of electricity. He served as a contributing author for Chapters 6 and 9 of the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report of Working Group III and is a 2019 and 2020 Highly Cited Researcher in the social science area. He received a BS degree in Chemical Engineering from Yonsei University, a MS degree in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering from KAIST, and a PhD degree in Management Science & Engineering from Stanford University.

Daniel Kim, CEO, Ark Energy Corporation Pty Ltd

Daniel has more than 20 years' experience advising on cross-border deals between Asia and Australia across a broad range of industries including renewable energy, natural resources and infrastructure. He is currently the CEO of Ark Energy Corporation Pty Ltd which is an Australian subsidiary of Korea Zinc Co. Ltd. Previously, he was Queensland Government’s Trade & Investment Commissioner for Korea based in Seoul. Prior to that, he had a long career at KPMG in Transactions and Restructuring. Daniel is on the Global Steering Committee of the Hyzon Zero Carbon Alliance and is a Director of the Australia-Korea Business Council.