Keynote: Clear Vision for Worldwide Action

Keynote: Clear Vision for Worldwide Action

Opening Remarks: Carly Rixham

Moderator and Opening Speaker: Scott Sklar

Clear Vision Worldwide Opening Plenary sets the stage for the full conference and provides an overview of where we are and what is needed to accelerate the energy transformation. The impacts of the major global disruptions due to COVID-19 are underscored in these discussions. 

Joining moderator and stage setting presenter, Scott Sklar, are Dave Renne, Immediate Past President of ISES, and Denis Hayes, Earth Day Founder. In addition to discussing current state of technical and financial innovations, they will reflect on the important role of public acceptance, policy and advocacy in the energy transformation. 


Jun 24 2020


10:45 am - 12:15 pm




  • Charlie Gay
    Charlie Gay
    Serves on the Sandia National Laboratory Energy and Homeland Security External Advisory Board

    Dr. Gay has over 45 years of experience in renewable energy. Currently, he serves on the Sandia National Laboratory Energy and Homeland Security External Advisory Board as well as the Advisory Panel for the Australian Renewable Energy Agency. He has significant private-sector experience, including past tenures as president of Applied Solar for Applied Materials, chairman of the technology advisory board for SunPower Corp, president and chief executive officer of ASE Americas, president and chief operating officer of Siemens Solar Industries, and president of ARCO Solar. Dr. Gay’s public service includes Director of the Department of Energy’s Solar Energy Technologies Office and Director of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. He is creator of the Greenstar Foundation, an organization that delivers solar power and internet access to villages scaling micro-enterprise in the developing world. Charlie has a Ph.D. in chemistry from the University of California, Riverside. He holds numerous patents for solar devices, won the Gold Medal for Achievement from the World Renewable Energy Congress, was elected to the U.S. National Academy of Engineering in 2013 for leadership in the development of the global photovoltaic industry and in 2019 won the Charles Greeley Abbot Award from the American Solar Energy Society.

  • Dave Renné
    Dave Renné
    Immediate Past President of the International Solar Energy Society

    Dave has worked on renewable energy R&D programs for over 42 years. After graduating from Colorado State University (Fort Collins, Colorado, USA) with a Masters in Atmospheric Sciences and a PhD in Earth Resources in 1975 he launched his career at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (Richland, Washington USA) where he worked primarily on wind resource assessment programs, both in the U.S. and internationally. In 1991 he moved to the U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory (Golden, Colorado USA) to manage NREL’s solar resource assessment activities and to work on a number of international renewable energy programs. He retired from NREL in 2012 but remains engaged in renewable energy programs through his consultancy, Dave Renné Renewables. He is currently a Senior Consultant to Clean Power Research, and has consulted with the World Bank, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the Asian Development Bank, and several private-sector organizations. From 2010 – 2019 he served as President of the International Solar Energy Society and remains on their Executive Committee as Immediate Past President. He also served for over 15 years as an Associate Editor of the Solar Energy Journal in the topical area of Solar Resource and Energy Meteorology.

  • Denis Hayes
    Denis Hayes
    President of the Bullitt Foundation

    Denis Hayes is President of the Bullitt Foundation. His career as a real estate developer was short and focused, yielding just one building. The Bullitt Center is a six-story office building that is net energy positive using only rooftop photovoltaics in cloudy Seattle. Architect magazine termed it “the greenest office building in the world” and Engineering New-Record found it to be the outstanding engineering project of any type in the United States in 2012.

    In 1970, Denis was the National Coordinator of the first Earth Day. Over the ensuing half century, he has been Director of the federal Solar Energy Research Institute (since renamed NREL), adjunct professor of engineering at Stanford, Director of the Illinois State Energy Office, a Silicon Valley attorney, and, intermittently, an environmental lobbyist. He also has been a Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson Center, the Bellagio Center, the Bosch Foundation and the Worldwatch Institute.

    Denis received the 1993 Charles Greeley Abbott Award from the American Solar Energy Society; the 1985 John Muir Award from the Sierra Club, the 1990 National Conservation Achievement Award of the National Wildlife Federation, the Joseph Wood Krutch Award of the Humane Society of the United States, and the National Jefferson Medal for Greatest Public Service by an Individual under 35. That “under 35” award was so long ago that dinosaurs may still have been roaming the earth. Time magazine selected Hayes as one of its “Heroes of the Planet;”

    Denis is the author of Rays of Hope: The Transition to a Post-Petroleum World, and co-author with his wife of COWED: the Impact of 93 Million Cows on America’s Health, Economy, Politics, Culture & Environment. He asked us to mention to you that both books can still be found in bargain bins at numerous independent bookstores and Goodwill facilities.

  • Francesco La Camera
    Francesco La Camera
    Director-General of the International Renewable Energy Agency

    Francesco La Camera is the Director-General of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). He was appointed at the Ninth Assembly of IRENA, the ultimate decision-making body of the Agency. Mr. La Camera took office on 4 April 2019 and brings more than thirty years of experience in the fields of climate, sustainability, and international cooperation.
    In his role, Mr. La Camera is responsible for leading the delivery of IRENA’s work programme and strategy in cooperation with the Agency’s member states. At a critical time for climate change and the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, Mr. La Camera is tasked with redefining the structure and operations of the Agency in response to the urgent needs of its members.
    Under his leadership the Agency has forged a series of new strategic partnerships with UN organisations including UNDP, UNFCCC and Green Climate Fund among others. A key priority of his tenure is to implement a more action-oriented approach to the Agency’s work.
    Previously, Mr. La Camera served as Director-General of Sustainable Development, Environmental Damage, EU and International Affairs at the Italian Ministry of Environment, Land & Sea since 2014. In this capacity, he developed cooperation and partnership agreements with a wide range of countries, particularly developing countries including Small Island Developing States (SIDS).
    Mr. La Camera held number of roles at the Italian Ministry of Environment, Land and Sea. As the national coordinator for climate, environment, resource efficiency and circular economy, he led the Italian delegation to UNFCCC’s COP 21 to 24 and the EU Presidency at COP 20. He was responsible for the preparation and organisation of Italy’s G7 Environment Presidency in 2017. He was a leading member of the Italian delegation to the G7 Environment Ministers meetings in 2016 and 2018.
    He served as co-chair of the Africa Centre for Climate and Sustainable Development established in Rome in partnership with FAO and UNDP and co-chaired the Financial Platform for Climate and Sustainable Development in partnership with the Italian Development Bank Cassa Depositi e Prestiti. He has also coordinated a number of national strategies including on sustainable development, green finance and fossil fuel subsides among other things.
    Mr. La Camera led the support provided by Italy to several renewable energy initiatives such as the Initiative for Renewable Island Energy (IRIE) and the Global Geothermal Alliance (GGA), coordinated by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).
    Mr. La Camera spearheaded international cooperation on issues related to climate change and the environment. He played a key role in developing initiatives between Italy and multilateral organisations such as the World Bank, the African Development Bank, UNEP, UNDP and FAO, to implement the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals.
    He chaired the meetings of the Signatories to the Aarhus Convention led by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UN-ECE) and chaired the advisory board for the Convention’s implementation.
    Author of many publications, Mr. La Camera was a Lecturer of Sustainable Development at the University of Cosenza and of Environment & Land Economics at the University of Roma 3. He began his career as an economic analyst at the Italian Ministry of Budget and Planning.
    Mr. La Camera is a national of Italy, and graduate of the University of Messina in Political Sciences (Economic Policy major).

  • Scott Sklar
    Scott Sklar
    Energy Director of Environment & Energy Management Institute (EEMI) and Director of GWU Solar Institute

    Scott Sklar steps up as Director of The GWU Solar Institute in August 2018, and The Solar Institute’s offices are at the Environment & Energy Study Institute’s (EEMI) office in Tompkins Hall, where he serves as EEMI’s Energy Director.

    Sklar has a 40 year career in solar energy. For the last eight years, he has been an Adjunct Professor at The George Washington University, where he teaches three unique interdisciplinary sustainable energy courses and is an Affiliated Professor at CATIE, an international sustainable graduate university based in Costa Rica.

    For the last 18 years, Sklar runs a clean energy optimization firm facilitating cleanly distributed energy utilization which includes advanced batteries and controls, energy efficiency, fuel cells, geo-exchange, heat engines, mini-generation (natural gas), micro-hydropower (and freeflow, tidal, wave), modular biomass, photovoltaics, small wind, and solar thermal (including daylighting, waste-to-energy, water heating, industrial preheat, building air-conditioning, and electric power generation). His company, The Stella Group, Ltd., is one of the very few companies that blends distributed energy technologies, aggregates financing (including leasing), with a focus on system standardization.

    Prior, Scott Sklar served for 15 years (1985-2000) simultaneously running two Washington, DC-based clean energy trade associations, as Executive Director of both the Solar Energy Industries Association and the National BioEnergy Industries Association. Before his move to SEIA and NBIA, he was Political Director of The Solar Lobby (1983-1984), a renewable energy advocacy organization founded by the nine major national environmental organizations. Before joining “the Lobby”, (1980-1983) he was Washington Director and Acting Research Director of the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT), founded by Senate Majority Leader Mike Mansfield and technologist EF Shumacher. This federally-funded applied technology laboratory focussed on the US and international low-income communities assisting them in system design, integration, and utilization of energy efficiency and renewable energy.

    Sklar began his energy career as an aide to Senator Jacob K. Javits (NY) (1970-79) where he focused on energy and military matters for nine years. During his Senate tenure, he co-founded the Congressional Solar Caucus that lead many of the innovative legislation promoting renewable energy in the 1970s.

    Scott Sklar lives in a solar home in Arlington, Virginia with solar water heating, geothermal heating & cooling, and photovoltaics/battery system. He has a unique PV system on the roof of his Washington, DC office overlooking Lafayette Park in front of The White House. And his zero-energy office building, based in Virginia has PV roofing shingles, small wind turbine, and a hydrogen fuel cell, and a web-enabled battery bank.on. His coauthored books: The Forbidden Fuel was re-released in 2010 by University of Nebraska Press for its second printing and A Consumer Guide to Solar Energy was re-released for its third printing.

    Scott Sklar sits on the national Boards of Directors of the non-profit Business Council for Sustainable Energy and The Solar Foundation. On June 19, 2014, Scott Sklar was awarded the prestigious The Charles Greeley Abbot Award by the American Solar Energy Society (ASES) and on April 26, 2014, was awarded the Green Patriot Award by George Mason University in Virginia., both in 2014. Sklar was re-appointed to the US Department of Commerce Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Advisory Committee (RE&EEAC), where he served as its Chair, (ending in June 2016) and re-appointed onto DOC RE&EEAC and served as Vice Chair through June 2018, and now re-appointed on the Committee through June 2020.

  • Tomasz Slusarz
    Tomasz Slusarz
    Vision Streamliner at CleanTech Business Club

    Tomasz Slusarz, Vision Streamliner at CleanTech Business Club

    Solar & CleanTech Passionate, Advocate and Disruptor
    Tomasz started his Solar & Cleantech adventure in 2004 in the capital of Europe, Brussels by joining a team of EPIA (The European Photovoltaic Industry Association) today known as SolarPower Europe.

    As EPIA’s Financial & Administrative Manager he was responsible for growing its membership from 40 to over 200 members, management of European Projects cofounded by the European Commission and increasing managing its budget by 10 fold during 4 years.

    In 2009 he founded CleanTech Business TV, the Reference TV Business Platform for Solar & CleanTech Industries, that brings the key knowledge to the business, financial and political decision-makers.

    During the last decade, he has been advising Political & Business Decision-Makers across the globe while helping national and regional industry associations in having their voice reflected in respective legislations.

    Today he streamlines the vision of the CleanTech Business Club formerly known as Solar Business Club – Private & Independent Human To Human (H2H) Leadership Club, that brings together trusted Leaders of CleanTech & other Disruptive Industries with The Leaders of the Financial & Investor Community, “Big Corporates”, Energy Companies & Utilities as well as Political Decision-Makers and Public Opinion Influencers.
    Driven by the Power of H2H and United DNA, CleanTech Business Club Leaders Anticipate, Shape, and Lead The World’s Transformation.

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