On May 23, 2016, ELEEP hosted a luncheon discussion on “G7 Energy Priorities” with representative speakers from the Embassies of Canada, Japan, the United Kingdom, Spain, as well as the US Departments of State and Energy. The discussion was moderated by current ELEEP Fellow Catrina Rorke, Senior Fellow at the R Street institute in Washington, DC. In addition to introducing their national priorities, the speakers participated in a discussion that ranged from breakthroughs in LNG technologies to carbon pricing and the commitments issues following the recent G7 Kitakyushu Energy Ministerial Meeting.
The discussion surrounded two major topics facing energy usage today: the solution to methane leakage and the practicalities of transitioning from coal to natural gas. Participants acknowledged that G7 has an imperative to set global trends in reducing fossil fuel emissions and methane leakage (an initiative known as the “methane challenge”) yet needed to operationalize the imperative with investments and results. The discussion evolved into ways in which G7 members could entice potential clients and business partners to take on the methane challenge and produce green energy. Speakers cited examples of organizations already committing to these processes and the opportunity for private and public collaboration. While acknowledging the ideal of greener energy, the discussion became rooted in pragmatism on how exactly the G7 and private firms can make it a reality moving forward.