Feb. 19, 2021

Societal innovation needed to drive global energy transition, say experts at Haskayne’s Petronas International Energy Speaker Series

Over 1,100 people tuned in live for the online panel to dive into Canada’s Successful Path to 2050
Presenters at the fourth Petronas International Energy Speaker Series.
Presenters at the fourth Petronas International Energy Speaker Series.

Even in energy-hungry Asia, the policy-makers are shifting to cleaner, more responsible sources of energy, said Tengku Taufik, president and group CEO of Petronas, as he was speaking as a part of Haskayne’s Petronas International Energy Speaker Series, the fourth occurrence of the annual event.

With presenters spanning four time zones, the Petronas International Energy Speaker Series provided a truly global perspective on Canada’s successful path to 2050. On Jan. 28, more than 1,100 tuned in live to hear from Taufik, along with Seamus O’Regan, Canada’s minister of natural resources, Maria van der Hoeven, former director of the International Energy Agency, and moderator Jackie Forrest, executive director, ARC Energy Research Institute.

The expert panel covered topics including the global drive to NetZero, transition fuels including natural gas and hydrogen, and obstacles to consider as communities around the globe make the shift to decarbonization.

O’Regan spoke of three objectives for Canada in the energy transition: NetZero by 2050, an economy that continues to grow, and that no one is left behind — not a region nor workers.

Petronas believes Canada offers the world a pathway to a low-carbon future. However, actions are imperative for Canada's molecules to reach the points of demand within the right window. “There is a risk that the further out we go, some of these molecules will get stranded by sheer unavailability or increasing scarcity of capital or consumers shifting in such a big way that LNG doesn’t become palatable for them even as they address policy shifts,” says Taufik.

The energy landscape is being influenced by changes in the availability of capital and consumer demands as well as policy shifts. Petronas made the commitment in November 2020 to get to Net Zero by 2050 in their operations. This was in response to trends the energy giant was seeing from financers, customers and policy-makers.

“What we are facing right now is not just an energy transition. It is an economic and a societal transition which also needs societal innovation,” says van der Hoeven.

The full video of the Petronas International Energy Speaker Series on Canada's Successful Path to 2050 is available here.