Energy Influencers #41 – #45

Energy Influencers #41 – #45

Here’s the next group that you’ll get to meet:

  #36 Alex Merle (Director International Sales & Trading at Cressman Tubular Products Corporation) 
  #37 Angela Merkel (Chancellor of Germany)
  #38 Vito Longo (Technology Editor at T&D World Magazine)
  #39 Orjiakor Isiogu (Chairman of Michigan Public Service Commission)
  #40 Charles Hendry (UK Minister of State for the Department of Energy and Climate Change)


 #41 Ashok Gadgil

Scientist at U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

San Francisco, California

Some people like Dr. Ashok Gadgil have influence all over the world, yet are making a difference one person at a time.

Gadgil is a scientist and Director of the Environmental Energy Technologies Division of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.  He is also Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at UC Berkeley.

Gadgil has substantial experience in technical, economic, and policy research on energy efficiency and its implementation, particularly in developing countries.

Gadgil has a long record of creating innovative energy solutions for indoor environments in the developing world, and he teaches others to do likewise…from pioneering utility-sponsored compact fluorescent lamp leasing programs, to disinfecting drinking water using UV lights, to creating and distributing fuel-efficient stoves to refugee women in Darfur.

Gadgil has received many awards for his work as a researcher, inventor and humanitarian including the 2011 Olympus Lifetime of Educational Innovation Award and 2011 European Inventor Award.

Gadgil appeared at TEDxGoldenGateED in June.  Do yourself a favor and watch it.  He delivers a very powerful message about hope, compassion, and how to make a difference in the lives of people all over the world, one person at a time. 

 #42 Josh Fox

Writer & Director of “Gasland

Milanville, Pennsylvania

#Energy100 Influencer Michael J. Economides may not have been a big fan of “Gasland”, but the 2010 film by Josh Fox did win many awards that year and the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Directing for Nonfiction Programming in 2011 along with several other high profile nominations.

Though the facts are up for constant debate, Fox can be credited for bringing heightened public awareness around hydraulic fracturing and has brought concerns about drinking water contamination, air pollution and other purported “fracking” risks to the front and center throughout 2011.

Rumor has it that Gasland II is due out in 2012….looks like Fox wants to be nominated for #Energy100 again next year.  What say you Economides, will there be blood?

#43 Gregory Clark

Construction Services Program Manager at CESC

San Francisco, California

We have many #Energy100 Influencers who affected thousands, or even millions, of people in 2011.  Others exerted influence on a more personal level, like Gregory Clark at CESC.

Community Energy Services Corporation (CESC) is a non-profit charitable organization and a licensed general contractor dedicated to building sustainable communities in the greater Bay Area by delivering innovative energy resources and building improvement programs.  Services include energy efficiency auditing and installations, solar consulting, and home repair.

CESC is a member of East Bay Energy Watch and Marin Energy Watch, coalitions of local governments, community-based organizations (CBOs) and PG&E.  The coalitions provide strategic energy and environmental services to reduce carbon emissions and promote resource conservation.

CESC employees like Clark are committed to the environment, eager to promote the growth and development of environmentally sustainable and energy efficient solutions for the buildings where we all live and work.

Clark is also committed to his community, volunteering with organizations such as The San Francisco AIDS Foundation, Special Olympics of Northern California, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, and the Bay Area Chapter of the American Red Cross.

But, to tell you the truth, I don’t know if Greg Clark of CESC is the actual Greg Clark who got nominated….or if it was this Greg Clark who blogs about Sustainable Development / Green Building….or likely it was this Greg Clark, former Shadow Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change.

But I do know this: people like Greg Clark are making a difference when it comes to saving energy and their influence may affect thousands, or even millions, of people.

Or sometimes they influence us on a more personal level…whether it’s in the San Francisco Bay area, in the Greater Seattle area, in the Tunbridge Wells constituency, or in your own hometown.

#44 Fu Chengyu

Chairman at Sinopec

Beijing, China

Fu Chengyu was nominated for #Energy100 by my “evil twin” who speaks Chinese and has the largest pink cow collection in Central Ohio.

The media agrees.  Fortune magazine ranked Fu 35th on their 2011 Businessperson of the Year list and the Wall Street Journal named him as one of the Twelve Global Executives to Watch in 2012.

In April 2011 Fu was appointed chairman of China Petrochemical (Sinopec), the state-owned petroleum and petrochemical giant ranked by PFC Energy as one of the top ten most valuable energy companies in the world. 

Fu previously served as chairman of China National Offshore Oil Corp (Cnooc) where he led the company to $17.6 billion of global acquisitions and a fivefold profit increase since 2003.  Sinopec believes Fu can do the same there and take the company to the next level.

Sinopec is one of the few companies licensed to develop China’s domestic oil and gas reserves, but the bulk of revenues come from refining and selling oil products inside China.  Fu has much greater ambitions.

Fu has led a series of acquisition attempts around the globe this year and wants to significantly broaden the company beyond China.  His ‘deal making machine’ generated 11 acquisition deals worth $10.4 billion since June in such places as Australia, Brazil, Canada, Cameroon and Indonesia.

Fu capped-off 2011 with a $2.2 billion joint venture with Devon Energy focused on unconventional shale gas plays in several U.S. states, including the land of pink cows…Ohio. 

#45 Dick Cheney

46th Vice President of the United States

Washington, D.C.

Dick Cheney was chairman and CEO of Halliburton Company from 1995 to 2000.  Cheney also served as the 46th Vice President of the United States (2001–2009) under George W. Bush.

Put the two experiences together and you have the only reason why Cheney was influential in 2011: the Halliburton Loophole…or as some like to call it, “Dick Cheney’s big fracking mess

In January of 2001, President George W. Bush appointed Dick Cheney to head the Energy Task Force that created the National Energy Policy.

After the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a study in 2004 that concluded fracking posed “little or no threat” to drinking water, Cheney’s Energy Task Force asked Congress for a specific exemption from the Underground Injection Control provisions of the Safe Drinking Water Act for fracturing.

That exemption became part of the 2005 Energy Policy Act and soon thereafter became known as the “Halliburton loophole.”  Halliburton had lobbied for the exemption while Cheney ran the company the decade before and the company is credited with inventing hydraulic fracturing in 1947.

Supporters of the “Halliburton loophole” would argue that regulation should be left to the states.  In fact, Texas State Representative Jim Keffer appears on #Energy100 for exactly that reason, passing the nation’s first Hydraulic Fracturing Public Disclosure Bill (HB 3328).

But after five years and a nationwide surge in drilling, it’s time to take another look at the exemption.  Back in 2009, Congress provided the EPA with almost $2 million to conduct further research on the fracking process and its effects on the environment.  The results are due in 2012.

So, does Cheney regret the Halliburton loophole?  Maybe someone who read Cheney’s 2011 memoir “In My Time” can let us know….but I’ll guess no.

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