Pathways to universal access to electricity by 2030

On the 28th of February 2020, Dr Lawrence Jones, award winning industry leader and practitioner, Vice President of the International Programs at the Edison Electric Institute (Washington) covered questions related to universal clean electricity access by 2030 and our role as engineers and researchers communicating vital technological solutions with key stakeholders in government and industry.

The United Nations has a goal of achieving universal access to clean energy by 2030. With less than a decade remaining, is this goal still achievable? What questions should we be asking to catalyse actions that leapfrog us towards this goal? How must business and regulatory models evolve in the ever-changing energy sector? What technologies, existing or under development, will shape the pathways to an all-electric future?

Dr Jones questioned us on the type of cities we want to live in tomorrow, on how we will measure a smart, liveable, sustainable city taking into consideration the global challenges facing the electricity supply chain. He encouraged us to rethink, reimagine, and question today’s facts before reinventing the present to manage the uncertainties of the energy future. For him, reliable, clean and affordable electricity is a vital component for a modern and sustainable society. He asked us to see energy innovation through the eyes of the customers, understand their behaviours, and their expectations.

Professor Jacek Jasieniak, Director of the Monash Energy Institute, facilitated the event. He mentions “It was a fantastic and thought-provoking presentation, delivered in his characteristic thought-leading manner. Lawrence argued that globally we need to think differently and be flexible for universal energy access to be achieved by 2030. He challenged the audience to question their own assumptions around energy technologies, markets and innovation, while also highlighting the critical need to manage global risk within this transition period”.

A/ Prof Ariel Liebman, Department of Data Science and AI, Faculty of IT, mentions "We were lucky to get such a personalised analysis of the electricity sector transition and how it impacts innovation across the supply chain from Dr Lawrence Jones. Lawrence, who is also affiliated with Monash Energy Institute is able to capture aspects of the transition that are often overlooked by many Australian and global energy specialists".

Dr. Lawrence Jones, Honorary Industry Fellow at the Monash Energy Institute, Monash University, has over twenty-five years’ experience in the energy industry. He joined Edison Electric Institute (EEI) in Sept. 2015 as Vice President, International Programs. Under his leadership, EEI’s International Programs has more than 65-member companies with operations in over 90 countries and has launched several new strategic initiatives including the annual Global Electricity Forum, the Africa Utility Power Sector Exchange, and the Thomas Edison International Utility Executive Fellowship Program. Prior to joining EEI, Dr. Jones was North America Vice President for Utility Innovation & Infrastructure Resilience at Alstom Grid Inc., where he assisted utilities worldwide with formulating strategies for deploying new technology innovated business solutions.

Download Presentation Slides (PDF, 4.85 MB)