June 2018

By Pero Jolevski, with Jeremiah J. Baronberg

In recent years, Monte Carlo, Monaco has played host to an important international conference dedicated to advancing clean, secure, sustainable, and reliable sources of energy.

Founded in January 2016 by the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation, former president of Poland Aleksander Kwasniewski’s Foundation Amicus Europae, and the Ukraine energy group, Burisma, the annual Energy Security for the Future forum has become a veritable who’s who of global clean energy advocates and experts to discuss and share ideas on creating a single, energy-safe market utilizing alternative energy and innovative technologies.

The forum serves as a forward-thinking venue for discussing the challenges of achieving energy independence for Europe—and the positive role that Ukraine can play in the European system of collective security. The focus of the 2018 forum was “Energy Security for the Future: Revolutionary Thinking,” and welcomed over 400 attendees from around the world.

Former president of Poland Alexander Kwasniewski opened the forum, saying,

“Economic relations, energy and politics in Europe are undergoing the most ambitious changes in their history after World War II. Russia’s policy is the most powerful destabilizing factor in Europe. We must find that unique unified model of energy security that will exclude Russia’s political and economic interference in the internal policy of European states, including Ukraine.”

Former president of the European Commission and Italian prime minister Romano Prodi said,

“We are now entering a stage of global warming that requires the introduction of an effective policy, much more difficult than simple mathematical calculations. Less fossil fuels, more renewable energy sources.”

President of Latvia Raimonds Vējonis delivered the keynote address, highlighting the importance of the European Union remaining unified in its fight against climate change and implementing the terms of The Paris Agreement. President Vējonis, the only sitting head of state who is a member of the Green Party, also outlined the steps leaders should take in combating disinformation about climate change and the importance of educating citizens about their role.

A discussion of the importance of advancing clean, secure, sustainable, and reliable energy sources in the context of the transatlantic alliance followed President Vējonis remarks. Joining the panel discussion from the U.S. were former U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu, former Ambassador to Ukraine John Herbst, and former U.S. Special Envoy for Energy Affairs David Goldwyn. The Europeans on the panel included former prime minister of the Czech Republic Mirek Topolanek, former European Commissioner for Energy and Development Andris Piebalgs, and Member of UK Parliament Mark Pritchard. This transatlantic panel engaged in a robust discussion ranging from the challenges facing the U.S. and EU transatlantic energy dialogue, the growing energy resources of the United States, the drive by Russia to control Europe’s energy market, and the varying responses to these challenges for European heads of state.

Several afternoon panels addressed such topics as: global energy futures; energy infrastructure, supply, and diversification; and future cities, including innovation and sustainability.

We will continue to report on these and other innovative and forward-thinking gatherings based on our commitment to supporting a sustainable and secure energy future.