Seven years ago, David Sandalow pitched an idea that’s turned into one of the biggest international gatherings on clean energy. While an assistant secretary at the U.S. Department of Energy, Sandalow proposed to then-Energy Secretary Steven Chu an annual meeting of energy ministers from around the world to help accelerate the transition to clean energy technologies. The first Clean Energy Ministerial was held in Washington, D.C. in the summer of 2010.

Recently, the seventh Clean Energy Ministerial took place in San Francisco.  Delegates from 23 governments and the European Union participated.  Thousands of business leaders, NGO leaders and members of the public attended the public meetings and trade show at the Ministerial. Sandalow, the Inaugural Fellow at the Center on Global Energy Policy, was in San Francisco and, not long after returning, joined Bill Loveless on the Columbia Energy Exchange podcast. Among their topics:

  • What new steps did U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz and other ministers take to give more momentum to clean energy?
  • How did December’s historic climate agreement in Paris influence this meeting?
  • Bill Gates and other investors in the Breakthrough Energy Coalition attended the ministerial and met separately. What did they do?
  • What should we look forward to when the ministers meet next year, in Beijing?