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Seated (left to right): Dr Weerawat Chantanakome, CEO, Brunei National Energy Research Institute; His Excellency US Ambassador to Brunei Darussalam Daniel Shields; Yang Berhomat Pehin Dato (Dr.) Mohammad Yasmin Umar, Minister of Energy at the Prime Minister's Office; Prof. Hidetoshi Nishimura, Executive Director, Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia; Dato Paduka Hj Jamain bin Hj Julaihi, Permanent Secretary (Downstream and Power) at the Prime Minister's Office; Mr. Sam Browne, Acting Director, Office of European and Asian Pacific Affairs, US Department of Energy. Standing (left to right): Dr Xunpeng Shi, Chief Researcher, Brunei National Energy Research Institute; Dr Romeo Pacudan, Chief Researcher, Brunei National Energy Research Institute; Mr. Toru Nagao, Director of New Energy Foundation, Tokyo; Mr. Tham Chee Aun, Project Director of Ditrolic Solar Energy, Malaysia; Mr. Ramit Malhotra, Associate Fellow at the Energy and Resource Institute, India; Mr. Yuki Kaneda, General Manager of Mitusbishi Corporation, Brunei; Prof. Zhang Su Fang, North China Electric Power University, Beijing; Ms. Kathy Yin, Vice President of Beijing Gorun Energy Holding, Beijing; Dr. Weerin Wangjiraniran, Assistant Director of Energy Research Institute of Chulalongkorn University, Thailand; Ms. Lucy Carter, Energy Fellow of Grattan Institute, Australia; Mr. Glenn Lim, Global Sales Director of DuPont Apollo Limited, Hong Kong; Mr. Juergen, Global Lead Energy Solutions of Orga Systems, Germany; Ms. Chen Wei Nee, Chief Corporate Officer of Sustainable Energy Development Authority, Malaysia; Dr. David Mooney, Program Manager of National Renewable Energy Laboratory, USA; Mr. Roland Yap, Director of GE ASEAN, Singapore; Dr. Srinivasan Mirmira, Senior Technical Advisor of US Department of Energy.
The East Asia Summit (EAS) region consists of countries with diverse economic backgrounds, political commitments, institutional arrangements and market structures. Yet with this diversity, these countries have common energy sector aspirations of enhancing energy security and ensuring sustainability in fueling inclusive economic growth. Despite the wide disparity of domestic energy resources, most EAS countries aim to increase the share of renewable energies in their overall energy supply mix.
Renewable power generation is sound from an economic, public health and environmental perspective. Greater deployment of renewable energy also reduces the demand for burning fossil fuels for electricity, which produces harmful emissions, greenhouse gases and contributes to global climate change. The path to a greater share of renewable power generation in the power generation sector is, however, fraught with impediments to overcome by policymakers in many EAS countries promoting renewable energy technology deployment.
The governments of Brunei and the United States have common cause in promoting and addressing key issues in the development and deployment of renewable energy technologies in the EAS region. Some EAS countries have extensive experience and lessons-learned in renewable energy technology deployment and have invested significant resources in knowledge development. The accumulated skills and information could be shared with other EAS countries. While the EAS recognizes the necessity of deploying renewable energy technologies, the EAS has not directly worked to promote sharing of knowledge and experiences in removing barriers to renewable power generation in a coordinated manner.
Thus, there is an opportunity Brunei and the United States, the 2013 chairs of Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and East Asia Summit, to lead a new workstream on renewable energy power generation to undertake activities to promote and spur the deployment of renewable energy technologies. The East Asia Summit Energy Cooperation Task Force (EAS ECTF) is an excellent fulcrum to leverage and expand international cooperation, with the objective of promoting the deployment of renewable energy technologies in the EAS. This new work would complement EAS ECTF efforts in its three existing workstreams: 1) Energy Efficiency and Conservation; 2) Energy Market Integration; and 3) Biofuels for Transport and Other Purposes. In terms of the structure of leadership in the additional areas under the RE workstream, the co-chairs envision a distributed leadership arrangement to enable broad participation, guided by issues or concerns by important participating countries.
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