Why CEE must take a leading role in the Clean Energy Revolution - Globsec - TPA Energy Tomorrow
Good morning everybody It's a pleasure to be here Vienna. What a wonderful capital and from our little capital next door in Bratislava. I'm John Barter. This is Ferdi Klaver. I'm British you may hear the accent and Ferdi is Dutch. Are we speaking in Dutch today or not? I think i can try and i still can understand. But i wouldn't, i wouldn't. Go for it okay! Do we have our presentation up? Maybe we do--- No There we go! Allright, super! So Globsec will tell you a little bit about... It will tell us a little bit about us and then we want to get to the real issues we've been known for many years as more as a security foreign policy think tank but we do a lot more. Whether it's
fighting Russian disinformation where it's looking at energy issues and fighting climate change. Now one thing is very clear to me - a simple fact - climate change is the greatest threat to global security that there is especially when linked to migration starvation and everything else is happening in the world. Now i'm very privileged because i've had - i'm on my third career and i'm sort of at the phase of now looking at what i do and trying to have an impact and make a difference and there is just a question: Why did you join as a Dutch national this strange little organization in Bratislava? Yeah that's a that's a good question. Actually so but first and foremost it's a great adventure to be here in this region of course. I also really like by the way and thank TPA for painting this beautiful ceiling just for this presentation so for this event. But certainly also the spas in Hungary, the majestic mountains in Slovakia, the caves in Czech Republic and of course the beautiful concerts yeah there's a work element as well so there is a work element so this but this is also really one of the perks but also really indeed also what you mentioned there's a very strong relationship relation between the conflicts that we now see all over the globe where we see that pirates and um former fishermen, former farmers they have empty fishing grounds and lands drying out.
So we're actually fighting right now yeah those sort of pirates and those sort of terrorists. So there's a clear link there- Also if you look at the population: the world population growth prospects it's really quite troubling. Especially in Africa it's gonna go up to five billion people in 2100.
So the refugee crisis we had in 2015 it's going to be peanuts in comparison to what's happening there. So I figured to go also here to this region because it's a little bit more conservative when it comes to the migration topics but certainly the sustainability angle is probably one of the best things we can do and we are also partly responsible for. So by taking that sort of action this organization allows me to do so. How about you John? Because you
started as an intern basically at this organization. So well there's a bit of a story behind that and i'll be very quick. So Globsec was founded in 2005 and it was actually a group of students from Bangkok Bistritza who came and pitched to me the concept of Globsec and for 13 years the company i worked for were the main sponsor of the organization, the first corporate sponsor. And we actually wanted them to not only
focus on security issues but focus on climate issues and the big issues across the region. And we have major conferences which is the Bratislava Forum and the Tatra Summit. But we have a very strong policy institute team of researchers which are dealing with all this. So obviously when i went for career 3.0 i had an offer to go to Globsec. I wasn't sure how i'd fit in the NGO sector so at
the age of 58, 2 years ago i became an intern and it was some of the best time of my life. And now i have to work a bit harder for a living as we've been going through from one crisis to the other but i would like to just talk briefly about Globsec not only as transatlantic but our real credibility in Europe now and the big move made this year with our board and we're very very lucky to have Wilhelm Molterer your former vice chancellor as our chairman. And we have many many other leading figures such as Gordon Binai former prime minister of Hungary and this team along with Anita Orban also from Hungary - not a sister or Victor by the way but she's heavily into sustainability. They guide us and help us which is very important and also across Europe we have Carl Bilt we have general John Allen in the US and Michael Chertoff who are big names who actually look at the foreign policy aspect We do so Yesterday there was a meeting with your chancellor, the Slovak prime minister the Globsec team to discuss how Austria would really become part of the Globsec phenomenon as a major major partner and that will be moving forward this year. So and there's the slide i should have put up but anyway right now I want Ferdie to talk about some facts and why CEE particularly countries like Slovakia, Slovenia, Austria have to step up and make a difference Ferdi, over to you! So obviously as we just mentioned and also was actually touched upon in the previous presentation very well we have a responsibility. Every country but it's
also sometimes good to zoom in a little bit in the country. So just for fun if you look at the the total CO2 emissions in the EU if you include just for fun Germany in the statistic of and put them in the bracket of CEE countries - thank you - it's approximately 52 percent responsible this region is for 52 responsible hm actually Germany and Poland are the real outliers in that sense. As you can see Germany and Poland are actually for more than a third of the total output responsible for all the CO2 emissions and actually if you zoom in - so what it's then all about? So just for the sake of the argument there's these sort of coal-fired power plants in Poland and Germany so one for example this the one in Poland is the most polluting plant in Europe.
There's a similar output as all the Baltic countries combined and the energy generation is also approximately 28 terabytes and i think this figure also came earlier in the first presentation which is also the same energy output as Slovakia. So everything combined all the everything so which is quite a sobering picture. Luckily it will be decommissioned in 2036. So that's great
but also and in Germany they will decommission all the coal plants in 2030 but certainly this is also what we're up against and hm and also why the other countries in the CEE region certainly also have a role to play and actually also have a lot of best practices in that sense so and i think it's a lot thirty about us shaming the Germans and the polls to move faster and that's what we believe we have to do in the region we have to step up we have to join forces we have to make a difference and we're going to talk about how we're actually doing that but actually i just want to talk about i want you to talk about the Romanians because they're the good guys aren't they? Actually when it is also when it comes to hydro and electric power plants - Let's say so for example there's here the dam. it's the - largest dam in Europe. It's approximately 40 energy production of the of the coal plant but it's a great one also a different part of the Danube region and i believe they also have 115 hydro plants in Romania. So that's also very good. They built
between 50 in the last 50 years and 115 hydroelectric plants. So we see that Romania is actually one of the good guys and we need to bring Romania into the discussion. We need the Romanians, the Slovaks, the Slovenians, the Croatians have really taken these things seriously with the Austrians to shame the others to move faster. Okay now the real question is what are we doing about it? Well obviously i've got Ferdie. So he's going to do quite a lot on it
because I'm very lucky to have him in the team. By the way we may be based in Bratislava but we have 11 nationalities on the team so we're you know we're quite diversified and the average age is 26. So I dirve the diversity higher. Typically about 70 % of our team are female and 50 % of the management team are female as well. So we like to try and get on with things that are important now. Ferdi run through this please and we've got a bit of time
on this and these are critical things we believe that we are doing in Globsec with our corporate partners with the authorities across the borders of Central Eastern Europe and we've been able to do this because when we were combating Russian disinformation we were doing it in 18 countries. When we created the largest database of returning terrorists we did it over 18 countries and that database was given to all the European Security Agencies and the US and so we do have a voice which we can use. And we do have a reach that can give us benefits but Ferdi, please take us through this.
Today is of course about energy! But also we focus on two - let's say - sector coupling appliances of this entity. So where's the energy demand coming from? So buildings, it was mentioned so, 36 percent of the CO2 output can be ascribed to buildings, so just leaking buildings. And mobility is 25 %. So these are cars and and these sort of things. So in total it's a 61 %. If you tackle those two, let's say giants so if you want to transition we need to focus on these sectors as well. And of course we have the core which is the energy transformation. So what is really important for us what we
do with our platforms with our top conferences where we bring all the people together two times a year the prime minister, CEOs, associations, the commission these sort of entities is to accelerate and to have this sort of needed public private dialogue in order to move forward. Especially in the next 10 years it is going to be heavily important where we invest in, that we invest wisely. We can only spend the money once. There is a lot of money but we need to do it in the right way.
So in order to reach the 2030 and 2050 targets energy transformation of course is the essence and also what we see here in the region we bring let's say like-minded companies stakeholders, public sector from different ministries also together to talk about these sort of issues. So what we do for example on the energy side is to really also have a little look at the so-called geographical comparative advantages that every country has. So for example it's easiest to explain with Norway. So Norway they have a lot of funds, also due to their oil and gas reserves which they can invest in a lot of renewable energy sources. They can do so and it's actually not so impressive because they have a lot of money because of the oil in the gas and they have actually a seacoast. So for them it's very easy to focus on offshore wind parks and also they can focus on hydro which is also let's say they're geographical comparative advantage. Similarly Austria of course: you have
wonderful mountains and you do a lot with hydro as well you have pump storage which is amazing. So you have a lot of advantages as well this is different for some of the landlocked countries such as Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary. The mountains in Slovakia are different, they are more steep, so therefore it's more difficult to have pump storage for example or to focus on hydro there's only a small part of the Danube there. Hungary is just flat so it's very difficult and it's also not so south in the mediterranean where you have more solar power potential. So there for those countries where it makes more sense to focus on nuclear energy as well. Which is of course a difficult topic here in Austria but you also have a different geographical comparative advantage here. So this is also one of the the things
it's clean in that sense not sustainable according to the taxonomy of course but it's also one of the things like what is their own pathway to move to a different type of energy in the end. So how can we move from for example coal? What is the position of gas which is also a deeply discussed topic also in Brussels and therefore also in the region but of course there's many positive things going on. So as i mentioned indeed so how can we focus on these two sectors like mobility and buildings where you also have let's say particular characteristics in the region so if you focus on mobility of course you have the automotive sector which is of course also in Europe which is very much centered in the trucks and the V4 countries. So it's very much about Central Europe. Slovakia actually has the largest car production per capita output in the world. So they produce one million cars a year which is amazing also for them. Because their industry
output is for automotive. They also are very vulnerable to the changes. So when it comes to supply chains but also when it comes to the green transformation of this economy of this particular sector. So for them it's also very natural to
focus on the green elements. So for example the batteries the hydrogen and also let's say some of the hurdles that the automotive companies are saying this is what is , why people are not buying electric cars yet. For example the charging infrastructure and of course the labor force will they have the right skills and by involving everyone we can actually tackle these sort of issues. So the batteries it's .. We established also the Slovak
battery alliance as together with commissioner Safyovich, commissioner Zafiz(?) is basically the let's say the godfather of the European battery alliance - really focusing on a more strategic autonomous system and in order to advance this topic it's really necessary also to work together with these sort of members. So also some of the the battery the new battery companies work with us on this to not only have a Slovak battery value chain so not only from the production side but also the recycling element. So that we can actually move forward and take the necessary steps to green this particular sector. Charging infrastructure is really necessary as well we also focus on this in the spirit of the investment priorities of the recovery and resilience funds because what we don't want is that only Austria for example is building a lot of charging stations but then Slovakia is not doing it. And hungary is doing it again so we don't have the green corridors that we all like because of course we would like to use the Schengen zone and move around and see all the beautiful places.
So we also focus on this to really make sure that all the - let's say -the priorities are not only national but actually are sort of aligned. So that's what we do with the charging infrastructure element. It's really, really a key topic. Labor force i've just mentioned so also what is really necessary is not only to involve let's say the ministry of economy in the discussion or the minister of climate action or whatever it's called in every country - but also for example the ministry of labor because then they can already prepare the labor force for the right job. So this is also not to be some sort of a hurdle.
Then of course buildings The CEE region also is really quite typical when it comes to the let's say the building market. So the EU average of house ownership is approximately 70. Whereas some countries are even up to 95 percent. Like Romania has like 95 home ownership. However at the same time you also see that there's not so many
because they own the house. Tt's there's not so many let's say savings available to actually focus on the renovation of the house. Actually building is absolutely the much like planting trees. It's the low hanging fruit because if you invest once in let's say a better energy label of your house your mortgage of your house goes up and also your energy bill goes down. So it's really a low-hanging fruit. But yeah so it's really quite difficult. So what we focus on here as well is not only on how do you actually renovate a particular building. So it really starts
with simple things like a window and these sort of with the window insulation these sort of simple topics and only later on you can focus on solar panels because otherwise you just have renewable energy sources but still the energy is going just leaking out of the building. Anyway so you see there it's progressing quite slowly. But that's the key focus. But it's also not so costly and it's quite doable if also the consumers are using their own budgets. Let's say
so, Ferdi. I'll just wrap up yeah I think we're there right. So the situation what we want to talk about is that Globsec does not just have blah blah blah we launch initiative so at the Tetra Summit 2019 the Sovak battery alliance was launched and now those Battery that battery site is being built already and manufactured to build the latest generation of intelligent batteries. The only intelligent batteries in the world for electric vehicles. We also launched in - that was 2018 or 2019 we realized that energy transition for CEE was going to be a real issue. We had to join forces on renewables. We had to re-stimulate the development of renewables. There was a lot going on
earlier in the decade but actually a lot of friends of mine who are investing in renewable energy in Slovakia found it was easier to build in Finland or go somewhere else. So basically we have to take best practice and make it easy to do. I think on mobility. I mean this is very significant. There are only 660 charging stations in Slovakia. There are how many in..? 66 000 in the Netherlands. In Netherlands we got a problem there. So we managed to get 50 million
from the recovery fund to actually start doing the infrastructure. One thing that's being launched as well is the CEE clean energy initiative which is going to be signed off by the president of Slovakia and the president of Croatia and we're hoping that the president of Austria and the president of Slovenia will join. Obviously the aim is to make that clear clean corridor where we can actually drive to Croatia in the right way. Quicker than just doing it as individual nations. On buildings it's simple: Human beings are requiring more and more energy all the time and if we're chucking a massive amount out the window through inefficient buildings will never get there. And this is something we can do and this is why at the Tatra Summit we will launch the Green mMrtgage initiative where there will be a different type of financing available for people.
So that's really - it from us. I would like to say that neither Ferdi and I eat meat. We did come by train and bicycle and we are returning by bicycle to Bratislava. So we like doing our bit but I would just encourage everybody to try and spread the word and obviously for us corporate partners are believers.
Corporal partners are taking the responsibility. We are very lucky to stay on this beautiful planet for a few decades but we need to have something worthwhile to hand over to our grandchildren because at the moment the story does not look good. Are there any questions? [Applause] Please feel free to ask questions. You can
also ask them in German and i'm sure Ferdi might understand. That I can grab a headset. I think we can get the headset. We'll get our headsets if there's any questions in German. All right. Yeah super thanks. yep Question: I was a little bit puzzled by your analysis that there is not a potential except hydropower and nuclear energy in in Czech republic, Slovakia and Hungary because from a technical view I see that there is potential. But I see it as a problem that there is no political backing for those resources. So do you see any
potential to increase the let's say energy put into those new renewables in the near future? Well actually it's an announced government policy to actually do that. Yes Slovakia is investing in nuclear again and there are increases being done but there is alongside that is a clear requirement to invest in renewables. Certainly in in wind and solar. So yes there is ongoing and obviously we have a responsibility to work with the government to actually make sure they get things right and so that's what we take on and just in addition it's so actually. Slovakia, they just produced two plants so which is a cycle of multiple years and you just not - so that they just produced it and also if you first want to move to the get rid of the the worst plants which is coal and then the second phase would be gas so that's where you want to move away from in the end. So if you want to reach the 2030 and 2050 targets it's very difficult to let's say say i'm going to invest additionally in nuclear plants of course so that's that's a first because for a plan to to get your return on investment it takes like 20 years or so.
So yeah in order - so you need to invest now to actually reach the 2050 target. So that's difficult however if you already have the plans. It makes more sense to it and actually use it and not decommission it and actually Slovakia just produced two so why would you quit it right now. Plus it's very difficult to have the --- yeah yeah Let's just talk about a pet hate of mine: I embrace nuclear but there's an element i hate and that's the export of nuclear waste and I believe it should be banned in the world. Countries who go nuclear should deal with their own waste. I actually believe the same for
domestic waste as well. I think it's horrendous that Europe are backing up staff and plastic and sending it to Indonesia to get it buried there. It's something we should just outlaw because that itself is actually wasting energy. Just doing it it's just people need to face their responsibilities and this is what a lot of it's about in the similar fashion you also have with biomass. Biomass i mean come on we're taking food away from people who's starving so these are things that we have to look at very carefully or we just import trees from from Amazon to burn here and we say it's a net zero. So which this is also happening right. So any more questions?
Okay looks like we get to escape. No thank you. I think what you're doing is actually very important. So to combine all the activities in the region as the countries are not that huge and it's it's actually very necessary that they work together and therefore thank you for what you're doing.