The Global Commission for Urgent Action on Energy Efficiency was established on 24 June 2019 at the IEA’s 4th annual Global Conference on Energy Efficiency in Dublin, Ireland. The Commission currently has 23 members and is composed of national leaders, current and former ministers, top business executives and global thought leaders.
With analytical support from the IEA, Global Commission members have examined how progress on energy efficiency can be rapidly accelerated through new and stronger policy action by governments across the globe. It has developed this series of actionable recommendations to support governments in achieving more ambitious action on energy efficiency.
The Commission's work comes at a critical moment in clean energy transitions around the world. Despite energy efficiency's tremendous potential, the world is struggling to capture its full benefits. Global energy demand continues to increase and CO2 emissions are at record levels. Meanwhile, energy intensity – the energy required to produce one unit of global gross domestic product (GDP) – is not improving quickly enough to offset strong energy demand and CO2 emissions growth. In light of these worrying trends, there is a growing recognition by governments and leaders across the globe that efficiency efforts need to be stepped up.
National leaders, key ministers, top business executives and other international figures announce 10 recommendations to rapidly boost energy efficiency progress worldwide
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Energy Efficiency 2021
Recommendations of the Global Commission for Urgent Action on Energy Efficiency
Energy efficiency can boost economies quickly, with long-lasting benefits
Energy efficiency and economic stimulus
IEA strategic considerations for policy makers
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H.E. Mr Leo VARADKAR
Prime Minister, Ireland
Leo Varadkar became Prime Minister of Ireland in June 2017. He has been a member of Ireland’s parliament, the Dáil, since 2007 and previously held several ministerial positions, including Social Protection, Health, and Transport, Tourism and Sport.
Mr Varadkar recently led the Irish Government in the development of an ambitious new Climate Action Plan with strong targets for energy efficiency, renewables and emissions reduction.
H.E. Dr Amani ABOU-ZEID
Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy, African Union Commission
Dr Amani Abou-Zeid has been the African Union Commissioner for Infrastructure, Energy, ICT and Tourism since January 2016. The African Union is a continental body consisting of 55 member states. Dr Abou-Zeid previously served in leadership roles at organisations such as the African Development Bank and United Nations Development Programme.
H.E. Mr Richard BRUTON
Minister of Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Ireland
Richard Bruton was appointed as Ireland’s Minister of Communications, Climate Action and Environment in October 2018. His previous ministerial positions include Education and Skills, and Enterprise and Employment. He is a research economist by profession. Mr Bruton will chair the Commission's ongoing work.
Mr Nick BUTLER
Visiting Professor, King’s College London
Nick Butler is chair of the Kings Policy Institute at Kings College. He spent 29 years at BP, five of them as Group Vice President for Policy and Strategy Development, and later served as a senior advisor to former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown. Mr Butler is also an energy commentator for the Financial Times.
H.E. Mr Alfonso CUSI
Department of Energy Secretary, Philippines
Alfonso Cusi has headed the Philippine Department of Energy since July 2016, overseeing the institutionalisation of energy efficiency measures in the country. He has more than four decades of leadership experience in both the private and public sectors, notably in the transportation and logistics industries.
Ms Lisa DAVIS
Chief Executive Officer, Gas and Power, Siemens AG
Lisa Davis has been a Member of the Managing Board of Siemens AG since August 2014. She serves as Chief Executive Officer of the Gas and Power division and is responsible for the company’s Energy business globally. A chemical engineering graduate, she previously worked for Exxon Corp., Texaco and Royal Dutch Shell.
Ms Connie HEDEGAARD
Former Commissioner for Climate Action, European Union
Connie Hedegaard was a European Commissioner between 2010 and 2014. During her career, she has also served as Denmark’s Minister for Environment and Minister for Climate and Energy. She currently chairs of a number of important institutions, including the KR Foundation and Aarhus University.
Mr Michael LIEBREICH
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Liebreich Associates
Michael Liebreich leads Liebreich Associates, through which he provides advisory services and speaks on clean energy and transportation, technology, climate finance and sustainable development. He founded New Energy Finance in 2004, which was bought by Bloomberg LP in 2009.
H.E. Ms María Fernanda Suárez LONDOÑO
Minister of Mines and Energy, Colombia
María Fernanda Suárez Londoño has served as Colombia’s Minister of Mines and Energy since August 2018. Under her leadership, Colombia is implementing an ambitious energy efficiency plan. Ms Suárez has worked in senior roles in the public and private sectors, including at Colombian oil company Ecopetrol.
Dr Ajay MATHUR
Director General, The Energy and Resources Institute, India
Dr Ajay Mathur is Director General of TERI, The Energy and Resources Institute in New Delhi, and a member of the Indian Prime Minister’s Council on Climate Change. He previously served as Director General of the Indian Government’s Bureau of Energy Efficiency from 2006 to 2016.
Ms Lisa MURKOWSKI
US Senator for Alaska and Chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee
Lisa Murkowski has served as the US Senator for Alaska since 2002. She is a member of several Senate committees and chairs the Energy and Natural Resources Committee. Ms Murkowski is a strong advocate for action on energy efficiency, most recently through her bipartisan work to improve energy efficiency in US federal buildings.
Mr Gil C. QUINIONES
President and Chief Executive Officer of the New York Power Authority
Gil Quiniones has led the New York Power Authority, the largest state-owned electric utility in the United States, since 2011. Mr Quiniones is also Co-Chair of the Board of Directors of the Alliance to Save Energy, and previously served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Electric Power Research Institute.
H.E. Mr Aziz RABBAH
Minister of Energy, Mines and Sustainable Development, Morocco
Aziz Rabbah has been Morocco’s Minister of Energy, Mines and Sustainable Development since April 2017. He previously served as Minister of Equipment, Transport and Logistics for more than five years. Mr Rabbah is a trained engineer, specializing in new information technologies.
H.E. Ms Teresa RIBERA RODRIGUEZ
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for the Ecological Transition, Spain
Teresa Ribera Rodríguez has served as Spain’s Minister for Ecological Transition since June 2018. Her previous government roles include State Secretary for Climate Change. Ms Ribera Rodríguez has also held senior roles at environment and sustainable development organisations around the world.
Mr Adam SIEMINSKI
President, King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center, Saudi Arabia
Adam Sieminski became head of the King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center in Riyadh in April 2018. Prior to his appointment, he held senior roles on energy issues at a range of leading policy and research organisations and also previously served as Administrator of the US Energy Information Administration.
Mr Masakazu TOYODA
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Institute of Energy Economics, Japan
Masakazu Toyoda has led the Institute of Energy Economics in Japan since July 2010. He is also a board member of several global organisations and companies. Prior to joining the IEEJ, he held prominent government positions in Japan, including Vice Minister for International Affairs at the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.
Mr Jürgen TRITTIN
Member of the Bundestag and Former Federal Minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety, Germany
Jürgen Trittin has been a member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs in the German parliament since 2014 and is also a deputy member of the Committee on Economic Affairs and Energy. He previously served as Federal Minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety.
H.E. Mr Claude TURMES
Minister for Energy and Minister for Spatial Planning, Luxembourg
Claude Turmes was appointed Luxembourg’s Minister for Energy and Minister for Spatial Planning in December 2018. He previously held the position of Secretary of State for Sustainable Development and Infrastructures. He was a member of the European Parliament for almost 20 years, serving as rapporteur for the Energy Efficiency Directive and the Renewable Energy Directive.
Mr Ben van BEURDEN
Chief Executive Officer, Royal Dutch Shell
Ben van Beurden has led Royal Dutch Shell, one of the world’s biggest oil and gas companies, since the start of 2014. Before becoming Chief Executive, he worked as Downstream Director and Executive Vice President Chemicals. He joined Shell in 1983 after studying chemical engineering.
H.E. Dr WAN Gang
Vice Chairman of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference and Previous Minister of Science and Technology, China
Widely recognised as “the father of new energy vehicles” in China, Wan Gang served as the Chinese Minister of Science and Technology between 2007 and 2018. As well as his current role as Vice Chairman of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, he is also President of the China Association for Science and Technology.
H.E. Dr Megan WOODS
Minister of Energy and Resources, New Zealand
Megan Woods took office as New Zealand’s Minister of Energy and Resources in June 2017. Her other ministerial portfolios include Research, Science and Innovation. Prior to becoming a member of New Zealand’s parliament in 2011, Dr Woods worked at Plant & Food Research, a New Zealand-based science company.
Dr Kandeh YUMKELLA
Former UN Under-Secretary-General, CEO & Special Representative of the Secretary-General, Sustainable Energy for All
Kandeh Yumkella is a former United Nations Under-Secretary-General who also served as Chair of UN-Energy between 2008 and 2015. He was the first Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Sustainable Energy for All, an initiative that he led. He is also a former Minister for Trade, Industry and State Enterprises of Sierra Leone.
H.E. Ms Salomé ZOURABICHVILI
Salomé Zourabichvili took office as President of Georgia in December 2018. Ms Zourabichvili served as Georgia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs in 2004-2005 and was elected to its parliament in 2016. She also previously worked in the French diplomatic service and for the UN Security Council, as well as teaching at the Institute of Political Studies in Paris.