Press Release 14 November 2007
ENERGY EFFICIENCY AND ACCESS KEY CONCERNS
FOR JAPAN, UK, INDIA AND ITALY
Roma 14 November 2007 - The debate at a round table discussion moderated by Roger Munnings, Chairman of Global Energy and Natural Resources Practice, KPMG Russia, at the WEC congress in Rome, centered on how to achieve economic growth in developing countries while ensuring environmental sustainability.
Opening the debate, Tokio Kanoh, the Chief Director of the Committee on Economy and Industry for Japan's Upper House, told panel members: "Improving energy efficiency is the fastest and cheapest way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions".
Kanoh urged others to follow the Japanese model which has made energy conservation and low consumption key goals. He stressed that Japan has one of the lowest ratios of energy consumption to GDP in the world.
By contrast, T. Shankaralingam, Chairman and Managing Director of NTPC, India, said that among his country's priorities is the need to provide electricity for the 600 million people who currently have no access.
"Our priorities are economic growth, energy security and the environment. We are concerned about climate change but at the same time we need equity in development throughout the world. We should not be denied the opportunity of growth," Shankaralingam said.
Acknowledging India's position, Milton Cateling, Chief Executive of the World Coal Institute, UK said: "Coal is a relatively cheap and available source of energy; the worst enemy of the environment is poverty".
Concern was raised by several speakers over human resources shortages emerging in the oil and gas sector and the potential impact on R&D, particularly in the area of new technology.
Nello Uccelletti, Chief Executive of Technip, Italy, warned that increasing demand for oil and gas and investment of $420 billion into the global sector between 2006 and 2010 for a vast number of new projects left many countries facing a shortage of human resources.
The participants unanimously agreed that sharing new technology and Intellectual Property between developed and developing countries would be vital to improving energy efficiency around the globe.
Jean Lemierre, President, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, UK, said: "Energy efficiency is vital as gains can be achieved very easily and it is based on shared technology and fairness. This is a positive story." However, he pointed out that energy efficiency was not at the top of the agenda for most countries except Japan.
Asked whether Japan would be prepared to share its highly advanced technology in the sector with India, Kanoh said: "Between US, China, Japan and Indonesia there have been many discussions about this. There has been collaboration and co-operation. We are working together to share the results of R&D. It's the Asian way."
Shankaralingam said: "If technology can be provided then yes it is wanted. But the market mechanism alone won't solve the issue - at market rates. How to share Intellectual Property is an issue."
In conclusion, the round table delegates set out the areas in the sector where they wish to see change. Lammierre and Shankaralingam, pointed to energy efficiency, Uccelletti called for greater investment in biofuels, Kanoh stressed development of technology to improve de-carbonisation. Cateling told delegates at the round table: "I hope that Governments spend as much money as their words suggest on climate change."
The World Energy Council in partnership with Oliver Wyman (global consulting firm) has over the past year worked on its third Assessment of country energy and climate policy aiming to identify key areas for policy improvements and to understand how successful policies can be transferred from one country to another. more >