EE Visionary Award Winners Encourage Others to Follow Their Lead at EE Global
Last week, EE Global’s packed agenda was highlighted by the EE Visionary Awards Luncheon, which celebrated and showcased some of the best-of-the-best in the efficiency world. The three award recipients represent what is possible when strong policies and innovative energy saving strategies are in place at the local, regional, and national level.
Ed White, vice president of customer & business strategy at National Grid, the Luncheon’s Sponsor, presented the first award to Arnold Schwarzenegger for his work as the Governor of California and for the efforts of his non-profit organization, Regions 20. The former Governor was unable to attend the ceremony because he is on set filming Terminator 5. Through a pre-recorded video he gave his thanks, applauded other California leaders for increasing energy efficiency by 40%, and signed off with a much-appreciated “hasta la vista, baby”. Christophe Nuttall and Terry Tamminen of Regions 20 accepted the award on behalf of the former Governor, during which Mr. Tamminen added, “The most important thing we can do for this country is get on board with Energy 2030.”
Commissioner Jong Cheol-Lee accepted the award for the city of Songdo City, Incheon, Korea. The city is focusing on applying cost effective technologies to increase energy efficiency. As one example, a “tele-presence” is being installed in residential homes that will allow people to connect with one another via video, greatly decreasing transportation emissions. The Commissioner also highlighted the Incheon Free Economic Zone (IFEZ) program, being developed through 2020, which is credited for much of the cutting edge infrastructure seen in Songdo.
Ambassador Peter Taksøe-Jensen accepted the final EE Visionary award of the day on behalf of the Kingdom of Denmark. The Ambassador detailed recent efficiency efforts of the Danish government, including the goal set in 2012 to become entirely fossil-fuel free by 2050. The country is also on track for a 40% reduction of greenhouse gases from 1990 by the year 2020. Mr. Taksøe-Jensen concluded by saying, “I think it’s safe to say that saving energy is in Denmark’s DNA… We think the Danish society will be much more competitive in 2050 than those who are going down a different path.”
Throughout their acceptance speeches, the award winners thanked the Alliance for providing leadership on the Energy 2030 goal to double energy productivity, and for bringing together leaders in the energy efficiency world. Each speaker also urged the audience – individuals, organizations, government leaders, and more – to take the momentum of the Forum and support energy efficiency in any way possible.