2020 Agenda

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Day One: Climate Finance & Policy | 16th November | 2pm – 5:30pm CET

As the world looks to rebuild, can the decision we make today keep us on track for net-zero?

The decisions we take today and the investments we make will shape the future we rebuild. As governments and businesses grapple with the pandemic, we must choose to support a more resilient, sustainable and equitable future.

A combination of political will, international cooperation and accelerated public and private investment in low-carbon industries, technologies and developing economies is required to keep us aligned with the Paris Agreement.

Day One of the Sustainable Innovation Virtual Forum will focus on State and non-State responses to two emergencies – COVID-19 and Climate Change – in a year in which governments must submit their updated climate plans (NDCs) and businesses plan for the new-normal

Core Topics:

  • • Raising public and private sector ambition: who is leading the way?
  • • Aligning global economic recovery with the Paris Agreement and updated NDCs
  • • Can responses to COVID-19 keep us on track to achieve long-term climate goals?
  • • What impact will dwindling resources have on countries’ efforts to tackle the climate emergency?
  • • Decision making and climate change in the face of a global pandemic: avoiding future lock-ins
  • • How do we prepare for COP26 and overcome past failures e.g. Article 6.

The Hon. Carolina Schmidt,
Minister of the Environment,

Diederik Samsom,
Head of Cabinet to EVP First-Vice President Frans Timmermans,
European Commission

Jennifer Morgan,
Global CEO,

Thomas Saueressig,
Member of the Executive Board of SAP SE,
SAP Product Engineering


Day Two: Energy Transition | 17th November | 2:30pm – 5:30pm CET

To reach net-zero by 2050, government recovery plans and updated NDCs must include pathways to overhaul our energy systems

Whilst the world’s energy systems are already undergoing transformation, national and regional energy transition strategies could become the cornerstones of global recovery.

Updated NDCs, government recovery and regional stimulus packages could provide the energy sector with the tools, finance and investment to radically redesign the energy landscape, shift to clean and renewable systems and steer away from a reliance on fossil fuels.

Day Two explores how investments today in heating and cooling of buildings as well as clean transportation and grid flexibility infrastructure will ensure the transition to a low-carbon economy, boost regional economies by creating millions of jobs and define net-zero pathways for other industries.

Core Topics:

  • • The NDCs, economic recovery and the energy transition: Driving lasting change in the global energy mix
  • • Linking national and regional energy transitions to rebuild a resilient global economy
  • • Accelerating investment in energy infrastructure to support the recovery
  • • The importance of linking short-term recovery to long-term strategies to achieve the SDGs and align the global economy with the Paris Agreement
  • • Scaling up transition-related technologies to create net-zero pathways across industry i.e. green hydrogen and heat pumps.


Francesco La Camera,
Executive Director,

Thomas Bohner,
Mitsubishi Power Europe

Angela Wilkinson,
World Energy Council

Brian Dean,
Head of Energy Transition,
Sustainable Energy for All


Day Three: Future Mobility | 18th November | 2:30pm – 5:30pm CET

The technologies, innovations and industries we choose to support and scale will change the way we move for decades to come

Disruption caused by the pandemic has impacted every industry, but none more so than the mobility and transport sectors. Region wide lockdowns, thousands of grounded flights, restricted public transport and housebound citizens have changed the way people move.

Transport underpins our society. It connects people, cities, countries and economies, fostering growth and employment. As we reshape post-pandemic life, supporting the right technologies, creating digitally smart and connected systems and investing in low carbon infrastructure, we can choose to accelerate the transition to a digitally integrated and mobility system of the future.

Day Three explores how effective policy intervention combined with accelerated financing and investment in emerging technologies and alternative transportation modes could fundamentally redesign urban and long-distance travel.

Core Topics:

  • • The future of transportation: connected, digital, low-carbon
  • • The impact of electrification on long distance travel
  • • Investing and financing an EV infrastructure revolution
  • • Integrated, multi-modal transportation strategies for urban environments
  • • Leveraging connectivity and digital technologies to rethink urban mobility
  • • Rethinking urban transport: ownership or sharing, public transport or micro-mobility.


Day Four: Industry Transition | 19th November | 2:30pm – 5:30pm CET

Decarbonising heavy industry is perhaps the greatest climate challenge, but does hydrogen hold the answer?

If the harder to abate sectors return to business as usual after the pandemic, they will account for the entire carbon budget in 2050.

Heavy industry – such as cement, chemicals, steel – and heavy transport – including long distance road transport, shipping and aviation – are together responsible for 40% of global carbon emissions and their contribution is set to increase as other parts of the economy decarbonise.

The cost of cutting harder to abate sector emissions is high and progress to date has been slow, but emerging technologies such as green hydrogen combined with CCS and CCUS could become a pathway to net-zero.

Day Four dives deep into the breakthrough alternative emissions-reducing innovations gaining traction and investments needed in the pursuit of net-zero for the hardest to abate sectors.

Core Topics:

  • • Capitalising on political and business support for green hydrogen projects
  • • Reinventing and redesigning hydrogen-based infrastructure
  • • Scaling finance and Investment for green hydrogen projects in the industrial sectors
  • • Boosting capital investment in heavy industries to catalyse the transition
  • • Enabling early investment to support  low-carbon production and overcome barriers to circular economy solutions
  • • Combining green hydrogen and CCUS to decarbonise industrial sectors.


Day Five: Land Use and Agriculture | 20th November | 2:30pm – 5:30pm CET

Accelerating the fourth agricultural revolution: a cornerstone to decarbonisation

Long before the pandemic caused even greater disruption to our global food system the industry was facing multiple challenges. As the agricultural sector begins to rebuild, stakeholders from across the agri-value chain must prepare against the potentially greater and more disruptive effects of climate change.

Like many other industries, innovation, advanced technologies such as biotechnologies, Artificial Intelligence, remote sensors and IoT devices will play a crucial role in limiting the sector’s contribution to climate change whilst mitigating and adapting to its increased risks will require shifts across the entire value chain and be utilised by regional and national policy makers to design more effective interventions.

The final day of the Virtual Forum will explore the future of farming and the impact disruptive, emerging and digital technologies will have in accelerating the fourth agricultural revolution.

Core Topics:

  • • Using climate-smart technology to build resiliency into our global food systems
  • • Digital tools to help governments manage climate change agricultural policy
  • • Utilising trends in digital agri-business to align the industry with the SDGs
  • • Why digital technology will create a more equitable agri-sector.


Carlos Manuel Rodriguez,
Global Environment Facility

Marco Lambertini,
Global Director General,
WWF International




Representing environment ministers, city leaders, UN agencies, private sector innovators and adopters


Discussing the circular economy, energy transition, sustainable mobility and climate finance


Attendees represent nations all across the globe
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