Speaker Series: Becky Buell of Meteos

In our latest edition of the Skoll Centre Speaker Series, store we heard from Becky Buell, viagra sale Founder and Director of Meteos.

Meteos, through its EnergyFutures project, is working to map perspectives on how to change our deeply embedded energy system. How do you compel businesses and their investors to reconceptualise what the future of their industries- and their investment portfolios- will look like in the next 20-30- years?

EnergyFutures, an investor-led dialogue, brings together companies from across the energy, utility and automotive sectors to explore the long-term value drivers that will reshape their industries. This space for discussion brings to light some interesting themes, and often conflicting views.

Most interesting to me was how Becky and her team frame the dialogue not about climate and environmental responsibility per se, but about financial bottom line.  For example, a company is valued at x, but in pratice, if a climate policy caps the production of one of their assets, then their full valuation can never be realized. Fund managers, then, are taking a second look at the reality of their investments and valuation, which clearly have a trickle effect into changing the system. The context that sticks with fund managers and senior company executives is around maintaining stable and predictable returns from energy investments in an uncertain operating environment.  Ultimately though, this translates into significant impacts for the future of energy, conceptualised both equitably and sustainably.

Becky shared humbling facts and posed challenging questions:

  • We are struggling to meet milestones of current International Energy Agency (IEA) climate scenarios.  If we keep doing business as usual, we’re looking at a 6 degree (!!) increase in temperature worldwide
  • The cost of energy is rising.  Who carries the burden of this cost?  And who has access to begin with?
  • Climate change is impacting infrastructure, which is under extreme pressure to meet demand and may be on the verge of collapse. Impacts in infrastructure in turn impacts investment portfolios.
  • Reinsurers are requiring insurers to have more cash on hand to cover a 1 in 200 year catostrophic event. Investors are waking up to the reality of climate change.

What are the game changers? What is helping move the system in the right direction?

  • Safety and insurance requirements
  • Efficiency standards
  • Unburnable carbon
  • Removal of oil and gas subsidies
  • Carbon price
  • Public investment in energy efficiency and innovation

With all the complexity surrounding the issue, we’re glad to see the major players coming together in dialogue. It seems that change is imminent, but the question is how will happen?  Admittedly, Energy Futures is just one player in the wider ecosystem of climate change agents, but as Becky says, EnergyFutures is giving companies and investors the “wind in their sails” needed to transition our destructive system into a sustainable one.