Debunking Myths about Renewable Energy – Participants
Tuesday, 11 November 2014 / 10:00-12:30
Keynote: Kelly Rigg, Varda Group
Kelly Rigg is a Director of the Varda Group consultancy (www.vardagroup.org), providing campaign, communications and strategic advice to a wide range of NGOs. She has led international campaigns for more than 30 years on climate, energy, oceans, Antarctica and other issues. She specializes in coordinating large international projects, particularly in relation to UN-related processes. She led the Global Call for Climate Action (www.tcktcktck.org) for five years, campaigning for a fair, ambitious and binding international climate agreement.As the Coordinator of the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition from 2004-2009, she led a campaign to achieve a UN General Assembly moratorium on high seas bottom trawling.
Kelly began campaigning for the environment in 1982, working for Greenpeace in the US to stop the Reagan Administration’s plans to open virtually the entire US continental shelf to offshore oil development. In 1984 she became the organisation’s wildlife campaign director. She then went on to lead Greenpeace’s successful international campaign to save Antarctica from 1986 – 1990, combining a political campaign with field expeditions and the establishment of a scientific base on the ice. During this time she represented Greenpeace at the UN. In 2002, she led the organization’s campaign on the World Summit on Sustainable Development, with a focus on climate change and renewable energy. During her time at Greenpeace she also served in a variety of senior campaign management positions, including as director of the international Atmosphere and Energy Campaign (1991-1993), and the Deputy Campaigns Director of Greenpeace International (1998-2002).
Laura Williamson, REN21
Laura Williamson is the Communication and Outreach Manager at REN21—the Renewable Energy Policy Network of the 21st Century—where she is responsible for promoting the efforts of REN21 to an international audience. Laura’s other activities include managing the production of specific reports and coordinating the biennial International Renewable Energy Conference. From 2008 to 2013, Laura was the Project Director for HELIO International, an international think-tank developing renewable energy solutions. Previously, she worked for the United Nations Environment Programme on industry and sustainability issues.
Ben Backwell, recharge
Ben Backwell is a journalist and analyst who has spent most of his career writing about international energy markets and finance. He worked for international news agencies and as an analyst in Houston, Caracas, New York, Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires, and covered the oil producers’ organisation OPEC, before moving back to his native UK in 2006. He helped set up renewable energy news service Recharge ahead of its launch in January 2009 and became Editor-in-Chief of Recharge in 2012. He is the author of the book Wind Power: the struggle for control of a new global industry, which was recently published by Routledge.
Christoph Podewils, Agora
Christoph Podewils gained his journalistic experience in the field and also collected several years of experience in the renewable energies industry. He holds a degree in geography and volunteered at the Westfälische Nachrichten in Münster at the end of the 1990s. Subsequently he worked as a science journalist for Deutschland Radio, Deutschlandfunk and other radio programs. After having worked as a science editor at the Berliner Zeitung from 2003 to 2005 and as editor at the Renewable Energies Agency until 2007, he joined the solar energy magazine Photon. Having been the Deputy Editor at Photon until the end of 2012, he followed the rapid development of photovoltaic from close-up. Christoph Podewils joined Agora Energiewende in 2013.
Hanne May, ergo Komunikation
M.A in German literature, history of art and journalism, with 20 years of professional journalism and consultancy in the energy business. May was the editor-in-chief of “neue energie” and “new energy” between 2003 and 2012, and head of energy communications, ergo Unternehmenskommunikation. May co-authored Grünes Geld” (‘green investments’), in 2003 and 2005. May has been a member of juries for journalist prices and renewable energy investments, and is on the advisory committee and an advisory board member in several entities. May is also the founding member and committee member of Women of Wind Energy, Germany, actively participating in various women energy networks in Berlin.
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