All Episodes

[Episode #171] – Rejecting Russia

Ever since Russia invaded Ukraine, policymakers and energy professionals alike have been challenged to figure out how Western countries could stop funding Russia’s war machine by halting imports of their fossil fuels. But, considering that Russia is the world’s largest exporter of oil, halting imports is simply not something that can be done quickly.

It is, however, something that must be done as quickly as possible. Numerous proposals and plans have been put forward to outline how various countries could displace the need for Russian energy exports. And generally, those proposals amount to accelerating the energy transition.

In this episode, we delve into some of those proposals and try to understand how much of a role they could play in displacing Russian fossil fuel exports, how long these measures will take, and how the entire global arrangement of trade and political alliances may have to be rearranged to accommodate them.

We tackle this huge topic in a two-hour conversation with three experts. To represent how Europe could proceed, we welcome back to the show Tim Gould of the International Energy Agency (IEA). To represent the UK perspective, we welcome back to the show Simon Evans of Carbon Brief. And to represent the US perspective, we welcome to the show Rachael Grace, Senior Director of Policy at Rewiring America.

Guest #1:

Rachael Grace is Senior Director of Policy at Rewiring America. She leads the policy team in its federal and state policy development and strategy. Prior, Rachael worked in ESG consulting for private equity and impact investors. Here, she developed the firm’s climate change diligence framework, assessed over 80 companies in sectors ranging from industrials to tech to consumer, and led the firm’s own environmental corporate responsibility. She has also worked as a triple-bottom line economic development consultant for multiple cities across the country including Austin, New York, and Augusta. She holds a MPA in Environmental Science and Policy from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA) and the Earth Institute where she was an environmental fellow. She also holds a B.A. in Political Science from Columbia University and a certificate from Columbia University’s Indigenous Summer Studies Program (ISSP).

On the Web:

Guest #2:

Dr. Simon Evans is the deputy editor and senior policy editor of CarbonBrief, where he covers climate and energy policy. He holds a PhD in biochemistry from Bristol University and previously studied chemistry at Oxford University. He worked for environment journal The ENDS Report for six years, covering topics including climate science and air pollution.

On Twitter: @DrSimEvans

On the Web:

Guest #3:

Tim Gould is co-head of the World Energy Outlook series at the Paris-based International Energy Agency (IEA). He designs and directs the work together with the IEA’s Chief Energy Modeller and contributes to the Outlook as a principal author. He also oversees the Agency’s analysis of energy investment and finance, including the World Energy Investment series. Tim has been at the IEA since 2008, and joined initially as a specialist on Russian and Caspian energy before going across to join the World Energy Outlook team under the (then) Chief Economist, Fatih Birol, who is now the IEA’s Executive Director. Before IEA, he worked on European and Eurasian energy issues in Brussels and also spent ten years working in Eastern Europe, primarily in Ukraine. He studied at Oxford University and Johns Hopkins SAIS.

On Twitter: @tim_gould_

On the Web:

Recording date: April 7, 2022

Air date: April 27, 2022

Geek rating: 7