The Week Ahead: International Energy and Climate Developments Take Center Stage


The focus on energy and climate issues for the week of Oct. 20 will be in Europe, where nations will meet for the last time before a year-end climate summit, the European Union will unveil new greenhouse gas and energy reduction goals and the International Energy Agency will hold an advisory board meeting.

Negotiators from more than 190 nations that are parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change will meet in Bonn Oct. 20-25 to gear up for the next round of high-level climate talks to be held Dec. 1-12 in Lima, Peru.  

Nations are working toward a agreement to be decided in Paris in 2015 that would cut greenhouse gas emissions beginning in 2020. Two key issues are expected to be addressed: the extent to which a 2015 global treaty will be legally binding, and steps that can be taken to increase short- and long-term commitments from countries.

The European Union also is expected to unveil a new climate change and energy plan during a summit Oct. 23-24 in Brussels.  

As covered in an Oct. 15 Energy and Climate Report article, EU energy and environment ministers are expected to finalize the plan that calls for reducing by 2030 greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent from 1990 levels. Also under the plan, 27 percent of the EU energy mix would come from renewable energy and energy efficiency would increase by 30 percent.  

The IEA’s Industry Advisory Board will meet Oct. 21-22 in Paris to discuss developments in oil markets and issues related to its emergency response review program. The agenda also includes discussion of Mexico’s energy reform program and key messages from its “Medium-term Renewable Energy Market Report.”  

Solar Development Meeting  

A draft plan on how to streamline the development of renewable energy projects on 22.5 million acres of California desert will be the topic of public meetings Oct. 20 in El Centro, and Oct. 21 in San Diego.

The meetings are being held by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, California Energy Commission and California Department of Fish and Wildlife.

As covered in an Oct. 7 article, the draft identifies the most appropriate areas for solar, wind and geothermal projects and specifies ecologically and culturally significant areas that should be protected.

Eight additional meetings on the draft plan are scheduled to be held through Nov. 13.

California Board Meeting on Agenda

On Oct. 23, the California Air Resources Board will meet in Diamond Bar to discuss the process for updating the state’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets; developments related to the CARB’s advanced clean car program, including an evaluation of plug-in vehicle infrastructure; and air pollution control matters.

Other Energy, Climate Events  

Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy will give the keynote address Oct. 24 at an event at Georgetown University in Washington on "The Power of Opinion: How Americans' Preferences on Energy Point a Way Forward on Climate Change."

The Environmental Law Institute will hold a panel discussion Oct. 21 in Washington on "The Role of State Leadership in Cooperative Federalism." The agenda includes discussion of EPA’s proposed carbon limits for power plants and the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative.

Panelists include Curt Spalding, EPA Region 1 administrator; Tracy Stone-Manning, director of the Montana Department of Environmental Quality; Robert Martineau, commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation;  Linda Fisher, vice president and chief sustainability officer for DuPont Safety, Health & Environment; and Peter Lehner, executive director of the  Natural Resources Defense Council.

Also on Oct. 21, ELI will hold an event in Washington on "The Cutting Edge of Corporate Sustainability Disclosure: Scope, Metrics, Standards and Ratings."

On Oct. 23 in Philadelphia, ELI and Ballard Sparh LLP will hold the "Third Annual Green Infrastructure Conference: It's Easy Being Green–Challenges and Solutions."

Simulcasts of the event will be held in Pittsburgh, Baltimore, Atlanta and Phoenix.

ICF International will hold an event Oct. 23 at the National Press Club in Washington on "Energy Efficiency—How Much? How Soon? At What Cost?

Speakers include Gene Rodrigues, ICF vice president, and Kateri Callahan, president for the Alliance to Save Energy.

The Atlantic Council will host an event Oct. 22 in Washington on "Mexico's Energy Reform—Tracking Progress."

Speakers include María de Lourdes Melgar Palacios, undersecretary of hydrocarbons for Mexico’s Ministry of Energy, and David Goldwyn, president of Goldwyn Global Strategies LLC.



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