Shell chairman is to co chair G8 renewable energy taskforce

The UK Prime Minister announced on Wednesday that Sir Mark Moody-Stuart, Chairman of the Royal Dutch/Shell Group, has been appointed Co-Chair of the G8 renewable energy taskforce.

“At the G8 Summit this weekend we agreed to set up a renewable energy taskforce and we are very pleased that Sir Mark Moody-Stuart has agreed to take on the industry Chair,” said UK Prime Minister, Tony Blair. “Sir Mark has extensive experience in this field, including through the Shell Foundation’s programme on sustainable energy. He and Dr Corrado Clini, the public sector chair, will provide a strong partnership to lead the taskforce. I am confident that they will be able to achieve a great deal in time for Genoa.”

The goal of the taskforce will be to identify the barriers to increasing the level of renewable energy supply and distribution, and to prepare practical solutions to the problem.

The taskforce will have a small core group of business and government representatives, but from the start will involve developing countries, non governmental organisations, international finance institutions and other energy experts. The group will report its findings to the next G8 Summit in Genoa.

“Will it be another talking shop, or will it put its money were its mouth is?” renewable energy campaigner for Greenpeace UK, Ian Taylor, said to edie, welcoming the appointment with caution. If the taskforce is to make a difference, it needs to come forward with policy recommendations with teeth, he explained.

“It is essential that there are firm targets set around the world for renewable energy sources,” said Taylor. Inherent barriers against renewable energy sources need to be removed, including the subsidies for other sources of energy, explained Taylor. There must also be legally enforced mechanisms which aid renewable energy.

Shell recently launched a new charity, the Shell Foundation, which includes a Sustainable Energy Programme to support projects that either encourage environmentally cleaner energy use or help tackle poverty by providing sustainable energy to poor communities in developing countries.

As well as having an extensive background in the energy industry, Moody-Stuart will also bring a global perspective to the taskforce through his experience as head of a large multinational group, says the UK Environment Department.

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