Knowledge Exchange Forum 2014 | Rethinking the Future of Energy

ESMAP KEF Rethinking the Future of Energy

As part of its Consultative Group Week, ESMAP hosted "Rethinking the Future of Energy," a high-level seminar held at World Bank headquarters on March 4, 2014.  Bringing together leading global thinkers on energy efficiency, community-level energy development, off-grid systems, and climate and energy, the event focused on trends in technology and financing that will have an impact on the global energy sector for years to come.  Four primary questions were on the agenda:

  1. How would we wean ourselves off fossil fuels, and what would this mean for productivity and investment?
  2. What opportunities are there for game-changing improvements in energy efficiency and how can these be locked in?
  3. What will future electricity grids look like and is 100% renewables possible and affordable?
  4. What impact will new technologies and business models have on expanding electricity access?


Session 1: The big picture – climate change and sustainable energy

  • "The Burning Question: We Can’t Burn Half the World’s Oil, Coal and Gas. So How Do We Quit?" Keynote Presentation by Duncan Clark, Consultant Environment Editor, The Guardian and author of a new book on climate change and energy. View the presentation on
  • "Reinventing Fire: Profitable Business-led Opportunities for Major Gains in Energy Efficiency and Clean Energy Supply" Keynote Presentation by Dr. Amory Lovins, Co-Founder and Chief Scientist, Rocky Mountain Institute. View Amory Lovins' TED talk.

Panel discussion:

Session 2: Perspectives on the future of large-scale renewable electricity generation

  • 100% Renewables Possible and Affordable? by Hector Olea, President and CEO, Gauss Energia.
  • What Will Future Electricity Grids Look Like, and is 100% Renewable Energy Possible and Affordable? by Dr. Gunther Bachmann, Secretary General of the German Council on Sustainable Development. Read the paper.

Session 3: Innovations from the field – technologies and business models for expanding access to energy

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