Plenaries and Keynote Speakers

ACEF 2017 will feature a plenary each day from 6 to 8 June. The Opening Plenary will take place in the afternoon of Tuesday 6 June to launch the Main Forum. The morning of Wednesday 7 June will feature a High Level Plenary Session that will bring in clean energy experts and thought leaders who will discuss their insights on overcoming challenges in building a clean energy future for Asia. The Forum will culminate at the Closing Plenary in the afternoon of 8 June. During the Closing Plenary, the Forum will disseminate the key findings from all the workshops, presentations, panel discussions, and plenaries throughout the week.

Opening Plenary

6 June, 2 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Auditorium Zones A-D

Asia’s energy sector is on the cusp of a major transition, as global agreements and market forces are driving the region, and indeed the world, toward an energy future that is smarter, more inclusive, and more sustainable. The opening plenary will set the stage for the annual convening of Asia’s clean energy community by exploring the current state of the clean energy sector, and describing what the latest trends and research reveal about the road ahead. Representatives from the Forum organizers, the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Korea Energy Agency (KEA) will welcome participants to ACEF 2017. These opening remarks will be followed by a scene-setter contributed by Sustainable Energy for All, sharing its analysis on the progress to date in the Asia-Pacific region toward meeting the goals of energy access and clean energy, and the adoption of complementary country-level policies. The session will end with keynote remarks from the International Energy Agency (IEA) that will highlight and expand on key findings from IEA’s newly released report, Energy Technology Perspectives 2017. Participants will be briefed on on "cutting edge" clean energy technologies, their anticipated effect on regulatory and market environments, and the role these can play in meeting energy and climate targets, particularly for developing countries.


Carmela D. Locsin
Director General, Sustainable Development and Climate Change Department
Asian Development Bank

Welcoming Remarks

Takehiko Nakao
Asian Development Bank

Jerry Bisson
Mission Director for Pakistan
United States Agency for International Development

Nam-Hoon Kang
Korea Energy Agency

House Rules and Forum Schedule

Priyantha Wijayatunga
Chair, Asia Clean Energy Forum 2017
Asian Development Bank

Scene Setter

Vivien Foster
Representing Sustainable Energy for All
Global Tracking Framework 2017 and RISE (Regulatory Indicators for Sustainable Energy) - Global and Asia-Pacific Results

Keynote Remarks

Paul Simons
Deputy Executive Director
International Energy Agency
Key Findings from “Energy Technology Perspectives 2017”

Plenary Session: The Energy Transition - Challenges in Mainstreaming Renewables into the Power Grid

7 June, 9 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.
Auditorium Zones A-D

This plenary session will address a key area of concern for energy policymakers and regulators, as well as electric utility planners and engineers, project developers, construction firms, renewable equipment providers, and bankers and investors in the energy sector: how can we successfully manage the “Clean Energy Transition” across Asia. The structure of power sectors, and way utilities operate, and even the viability of utility business models are in flux. Extreme changes and competition are driven by continued cost reductions for renewable energy technologies, due to manufacturing improvements and driven by competitive approaches to procurement, and the need for countries to meet their ambitious RE goals and targets, This session will address key aspects of the energy transition, including the role of renewable fuels vis-a-vis fossil fuels in global and regional markets during the transition period; how renewable energy technologies may evolve and change the power sector landscape; the principles and practice of integrating large-scale variable renewable energy into the grid; the need for Asian utilities to reexamine and reinvent their business models, and the imperative of making hydropower truly sustainable in a high-renewables world.

Opening Remark

Stephen Groff
Vice-President (Operations 2)
Asian Development Bank

Keynote Remarks

Dr. Sun Xiansheng
Secretary General
International Energy Forum
“Energy Outlook: The Role of Renewables vs. Fossil Resources in the Power Sector During the Next 5-10 Years”

Panel Discussion

Yongping Zhai
Technical Advisor (Energy)
Sustainable Development and Climate Change Department
Asian Development Bank


Jaquelin Cochran
Manager of Markets & Policy Analysis Group, Strategic Energy Analysis Center
National Renewable Energy Laboratory
“Large-Scale Integration of Variable Renewable Energy: U.S. and International Lessons Learned”

Niels Ehlers
Head of Concepts and System Strategy
50Hertz (a German utility)
“How a German Regional Transmission System Operator Manages a Grid with 50% Renewable Energy Output: What It Takes to Maintain a Stable Grid”

Dr. Bartosz Wojszczyk
President & CEO
Decision Point Global
“How Disruptive Technologies Will Shape the Power Grid in Ways That We May Not Currently Envision”

Somesh Kumar
Leader Power and Utilities
Ernst & Young, India
“Perspectives on Developments in Renewable Energy and Grid Technologies Will Affect Asian Utility Business Models.”

Richard Taylor
International Hydropower Association
“The Challenge and Imperative of Making Hydropower Sustainable in a High-Renewables World”

Sun Xiansheng
Secretary General
International Energy Forum

Closing Plenary

8 June, 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.
Auditorium Zones A-D

Reflections from the Community

Each year during the design of ACEF, the chairs of the Thematic Tracks curate a set of sessions that cover key and emerging issues of their sectoral areas: energy efficiency, renewable energy, energy access, and future trends and issues. This panel discussion provides an opportunity for the Track Chairs to share their observations and reflections based on discussions during the sessions, from related Deep Dive Workshops earlier in the week, and in the hallways and receptions. What are the new and innovative ideas and approaches that emerged? What were the most entrenched issues and problems in the view of the presenters, as well as the audience, during discussions? What key issues and opportunities should the Asia Clean Energy Community keep its eyes on as we forge into the future? What are important messages for ADB, USAID, KEA, and the many other donors working in the energy sector?


Ashok Bhargava
Director, East Asia Energy Division
Asian Development Bank


Aiming Zhou, Asian Development Bank
Melanie Slade, International Energy Agency
Cindy Tiangco, Asian Development Bank
Gurbuz Gonul, IRENA
Jiwan Acharya, Asian Development Bank
Soma Dutta, ENERGIA
Dan Millison, Asian Development Bank
Wei-nee Chen, Sustainable Energy Development Authority of Malaysia

Keynote Address

As we wrap up this 12th edition of the Asia Clean Energy Forum, we seek to provide vision and inspiration to the community of thought leaders and practitioners that take time out of their busy schedules to attend the event. While there have been many impressive changes and developments in the sector over the past decade--in terms of energy access, investment and finance, business models, and implementation of clean energy programs-- these developments do not approach the scale and pace needed to transform the sector and meet energy access and security needs while addressing the serious threat posed by climate change. Our closing keynote speakers will draw on their experience and lessons learned to provide a call to arms for the Asia clean energy community.

Ajaita Shah
Founder and CEO
Frontier Markets

Laure Vinçotte
Managing Director
ENGIE Rassembleurs d'Energies SAS

Ingo Puhl
Director for Strategy, Co-Founder and Member
South Pole Carbon