Columbia Energy Exchange features in-depth conversations with the world’s top energy and climate leaders from government, business, academia and civil society. The program explores today’s most pressing opportunities and challenges across energy sources, financial markets, geopolitics and climate change as well as their implications for both the U.S. and the world.
Creating Supply Chains For Critical Minerals
The clean energy transition will involve an unprecedented investment in zero and low-carbon technologies. This shift to a clean energy system will require what are known as critical minerals such as aluminum and copper used in photovoltaic solar panels, and lithium and cobalt used in lithium-ion batteries.
New surges in demand for these critical minerals has challenged the ability of global supply chains to keep pace with this demand. As more and more nations commit to ambitious net-zero targets, demand for these minerals will only go up.
In this episode, Host Bill Loveless interviews Frank Fannon, the Managing Director of Fannon Global Advisors, a firm focused on geopolitics, market transformation, and the global energy transition.
Mr. Fannon was formerly the First Assistant Secretary for Energy Resources in the U.S. State Department, where he advised the Secretary of State on a host of issues related to energy resources and national security.
Bill spoke with Mr. Fannon about the future of the critical minerals supply chain as well as some of the broader geopolitical trends in the clean energy landscape.This episode references a past live episode that Host Jason Bordoff conducted with Ford CEO Jim Farley and Mary Nichols, Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the Center on Global Energy Policy and the former Chair of the California Air Resources Board.
Financing Latin America’s Energy Transition
Most of the pressure on oil companies to make more environmentally-conscious investments is targeted at companies like Shell and Exxon. But these companies produce only 15 percent of the world’s oil and gas supply.
The majority of oil production comes from nationally-owned oil companies, and the question of how they will respond to the clean energy transition is especially vital in Latin America where state-owned companies like PDVSA, PetroBras and Pemex dominate the region’s energy sector.
In this episode, Host Jason Bordoff speaks with a leading expert on oil markets and the Environmental Social and Governance (ESG) agenda in Latin America -- Dr. Luisa Palacios. She has special insight into this topic as a former board chair of the oil refiner Citgo, an energy firm owned by the Venezuala-based nationalized oil company, PDVSA.
Dr. Palacios is currently a Senior Research Scholar at CGEP and received a Masters degree at Columbia University. Previously, she was Medley Global Advisor’s Head of Latin America. She also worked at Barclays Capital as a Director in emerging markets research.
Dr. Palacios spoke with Jason about where Venezuela and other Latin American oil majors are headed in a moment of big market shifts. They also took a broader look at the future of oil and ESG practices in the Latin American Region.
The Path Forward for Residential Solar
The Biden Administration recently released a blueprint for how the U.S. could get nearly half of its electricity from the sun by 2050 called, “The Solar Futures Study.” But reaching that 50% will require an expansive, multi-sector investment of money and resources toward the clean electricity source that meets only about 4% of the nation’s power demand now.
Host Bill Loveless dug into the hows of deploying solar widely and effectively with Mary Powell, the recently-appointed CEO of Sunrun, a leading residential solar company in the U.S.
Mary previously headed up the Vermont-based electric utility, Green Mountain Power.
While there, Mary was known for being a disruptor in the utility space in her embrace of clean energy reforms.
Bill and Mary spoke about the tricky nature of the residential solar market, how solar is figuring into congressional legislation and how electric utilities can work with the clean energy transition instead of fighting it.
The Road Ahead for the Electric Vehicle Market
The transportation sector is the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions, and there is much excitement today about the road ahead for electric vehicles.
Many automakers have pledged to increase the share of their production by going all battery or fuel cell electric within a decade, but few of the new models meet current buyer preference for larger vehicles with increased utility. But the Ford Motor Company’s introduction of the F-150 Lightning, a battery electric version of the best-selling truck in the U.S. for the last 44 years, may signal a tipping point in building the future of zero emissions transportation.
This live episode of the podcast, moderated by Host Jason Bordoff, features two key figures in the clean transportation transition:
The first is Jim Farley, President and Chief Executive Officer of Ford, a role he took on just about a year ago. He also serves as a member of the company’s Board of Directors and was previously Chief Operating Officer.
Also in the conversation is Mary Nichols, a long-time environmental champion and Chair of the California Air Resources Board. She’s now a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the Center on Global Energy Policy.
Jim and Mary discuss the significant changes taking place in the industry’s plans and strategies to achieve carbon neutrality and the role of regulation, policy and investments in building demand for battery electric vehicles.
The Climate Group has selected the Columbia Climate School as its University partner for this year’s Climate Week NYC. Running Sept. 20-26, Climate Week NYC convened key climate leaders to accelerate climate action and discuss ambitious commitments ahead of the 26th UN Climate Change Conference this fall in Glasgow.
Making Sense of Soaring Gas Prices in Europe and Asia
Currently, high gas prices are rippling throughout much of Europe and Asia. The spike has driven up the price of coal too and sent electricity prices for businesses and homeowners to record highs.
Governments are meeting with stakeholders and developing emergency plans. But as winter approaches, they’re in a time crunch to find a fix as large parts of Asia and Europe risk severe coal and gas shortages if the price surge continues.
In this episode of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff speaks with energy experts Anne-Sophie Corbeau and Dr. Tatiana Mitrova, who break down the latest on the crisis.
Anne-Sophie Corbeau is currently a global research scholar at CGEP and was previously the head of gas analysis at BP and a senior gas analyst at the International Energy Agency.
Tatiana Mitrova is a CGEP non-resident fellow and research director of the SKOLKOVO Energy Centre in Moscow. She is also a member of Schlumberger's Board of Directors, and NOVATEK’s Board of Directors.
A Major Milestone For Direct-Air CO2 Capture
The world’s biggest carbon capture and storage machine launched last week in Iceland. It’s called Orca. According to Swiss startup Climeworks, the company which built the plant, it will capture 4,000 metric tons of CO2 per year and bury it underground.
The launch event for this new project was attended by the Center on Global Energy Policy’s Dr. Julio Friedmann. Host Bill Loveless snagged him for an interview to discuss what he saw there.
Julio is a Senior Research Scholar at CGEP and one of the most well-known experts on carbon capture, removal and storage. He is also a distinguished associate at the Energy Futures Initiative.
He gave his take on what the Orca plant foretells about this technology, the potential drawbacks, areas of concern, and why he believes that carbon capture technologies are integral to addressing climate change.