The Spectator Energy Summit

Starts 3 November 2020, 9:00am

In partnership with


From industry to homeowners, how does society make the shift to greener technology? Can new technologies and advancements bring together the levelling up agenda, our net zero targets and a way forward for Britain’s Covid recovery?

Join The Spectator’s Fraser Nelson along with industry experts and leaders for this year’s virtual Energy Summit. Registration is free and open to all. In partnership with National Grid.

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Kwasi Kwarteng MP

Kwasi Kwarteng is the Conservative member of parliament for Spelthorne and the minister of state for Business, Energy and Clean Growth in the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. Previously Kwasi has been parliamentary under-secretary of state in the Department for Exiting the European Union, and served as parliamentary private secretary (PPS) to the chancellor of the exchequer and the leader of the House of Lords. Prior to entering Parliament, Kwasi worked as a financial analyst and author. In addition to his political career, Kwasi is also a widely known historian. Kwasi also regularly appears in the broadcast media. In October 2018 Kwasi wrote and presented the BBC Radio 4 series Living with Empire. He also presented an edition of BBC 2’s Artsnight on Art and the British Empire in 2015. Kwasi has participated in a number of editions of Question Time and Any Questions, as well as contributing to political and news programmes.

Bim Afolami MP

Bim Afolami was first elected as the Member of Parliament for Hitchin & Harpenden in 2017, following a successful career in the City – first as a corporate lawyer and then as a Senior Executive at HSBC. Bim grew up watching his parents serve the local community with dedication. His father is a consultant doctor in the NHS, and his mother is a pharmacist. He wanted to make that same positive difference to people as their Member of Parliament. In Parliament, Bim champions both the environment and the economy. He is Chair of the APPGs on Renewable and Sustainable Energy, Markets and Financial Services, and Credit Unions.

Polly Billington

Polly Billington is the director of UK100, a network of local leaders committed to clean energy, clean air and climate action. She was previously special adviser at DECC (2008-10), director of communications on Sadiq Khan’s selection campaign to be a London Mayoral candidate, and head of communications and campaigns at Citizens Advice.

John Sauven

John Sauven is the executive director of Greenpeace, and has been since 2007. John’s first campaign at Greenpeace was helping to protect the Great Bear Rainforest in Canada in the mid-90s. Since then John has been instrumental in many campaigns, some of his achievements include: securing a moratorium on forest destruction in the Amazon by soya producers; forming a coalition between energy companies to promote offshore renewable energy and steering the creation of the Rang-tan video, exposing deforestation for palm oil, which was watched by over 70 million people.

Duncan Burt

Duncan Burt is COP26 director at National Grid Group, leading the Group’s engagement in decarbonisation and Climate change. Until recently he was director of operations for the UK electricity and gas transmission grids. He has held a variety of commercial and engineering roles at National Grid. Prior to joining the company, he worked in Pharmaceuticals for GlaxoSmithKline. National Grid is one of the largest listed utilities in the world, with operations in the UK and the US.

Andrew Carter

Andrew Carter is the chief executive for Centre for Cities. Before that he was the deputy chief executive and director of Policy and Research with overall responsibility for the Centre’s research and policy programme. Andrew has over 20 years of experience working on urban economic policy issues for public and private development agencies, consultants and research institutes. He has also spent time in the US as part of the Churchill Foundation’s Fellowship Programme reviewing urban economic development policy and practice in American cities including New York, Washington DC, Boston and Chicago. He is a regular media contributor and chairs and speaks at conferences across the UK and Europe on a wide range of urban and economic issues.

Baroness Verma

Lord Kerslake

Lord Kerslake is chair of Peabody, chair of Be First (Barking and Dagenham Council’s regeneration company), chair of the London Collective Investment Vehicle (London CIV), chair of Sheffield Theatres, chair of Sheffield Hallam University, chair of the Centre for Public Scrutiny (CfPS), chair of the New Economics Foundation and president of the Local Government Association (LGA). Lord Kerslake was recently appointed as new chair of Stockport Mayoral Development Corporation (MDC) to help deliver transport and regeneration ambitions for the town. In addition to this, he chairs the UK2070 Commission, an independent inquiry into city and regional inequalities in the UK, set up to conduct a review of the policy and spatial issues related to the UK’s long-term city and regional development. A former head of the Civil Service, Lord Kerslake led the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) from November 2010, stepping down in February 2015. Prior to this, he was the first chief executive of the Homes and Communities Agency. Before joining the Civil Service Lord Kerslake received a knighthood for his services to local government, spending eight years serving the London Borough of Hounslow and then a further 11 years leading Sheffield Council. In early 2015, he was made a life peer, taking the title Baron Kerslake, of Endcliffe in the City of Sheffield.

Tony Green

Tony Green is project director for Hydrogen and Gas Transmission at National Grid. Tony has responsibility for leading the thinking for gas transmission to play its role in the pathway to net zero through decarbonising the network either through hydrogen blends or even a full transition to hydrogen. Tony joined National Grid two years ago as Head of Engineering and Asset Management. A Civil Engineer by degree Tony has worked in the utilities and infrastructure sectors for over 30 years. He began his career at Severn Trent before moving to Advantica and then DNV GL in a variety of business and sector leadership roles providing a broad range of advisory services and asset management solutions. Tony is a Chartered Engineer, a Fellow of both CIWEM and IGEM and serves on the boards of both GERG and Marcogaz. Tony became IGEM President in May 2019.

Lord Deben

The Rt. Hon John Gummer, Lord Deben, set up and now runs Sancroft, a Corporate Responsibility consultancy working with blue-chip companies around the world on environmental, social and ethical issues. Lord Deben is chairman of the Committee on Climate Change, Valpak Limited, and the Personal Investment Management & Financial Advisers Association. He was the longest serving secretary of state for the Environment the UK has ever had (1993-97). His sixteen years of top-level ministerial experience also include minister for Agriculture, Fisheries & Food, minister for London, Employment minister and paymaster general in HM Treasury. He has consistently championed an identity between environmental concerns and business sense.

Graeme Cooper

Graeme Cooper is project director for Transport Decarbonisation and East Coast 2030 at National Grid. He leads National Grid’s work on transport decarbonisation enabling the journey to Net-Zero transport (Road, Rail, Aviation & Maritime). Graeme also leads the drive towards the Net-Zero 2050 target, by delivering a pathway for critical connections in the East of England by 2030 to enable delivery of the UK’s Offshore Wind Sector Deal. With over a decade in communications infrastructure and over a decade in low/zero carbon electricity, Graeme is a well-known and highly respected energy industry expert. Graeme is a graduate of Oxford Brookes University (BSc 1997) and Bi Norwegian Business School (MBA Energy 2016).

Nicola Shaw

Nicola Shaw is the executive director of National Grid UK. Nicola is positioned firmly at the heart of meeting the energy challenges of the future. She joined National Grid in July 2016 after holding the CEO role at HS1 for five years. She is highly regarded in the UK transport industry and in July 2015 was asked to report to the UK Government on the future structure and financing of Network Rail. The subsequently named Shaw report was published in March 2016. Nicola holds a BA in Modern History and Economics from Oxford University and an MSc in Transport from MIT. She was awarded a CBE in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours List 2015.

Fraser Nelson (Chair)

Fraser Nelson is the editor of The Spectator. He joined the magazine in 2006 as political editor and became editor three years afterwards. He is a columnist for the Daily Telegraph, listed as one of Debrett’s 20 most influential journalists of 2016. He has been named political journalist of the year in the British Press Awards and Editors' Editor of the year (the top award in the UK magazine industry). He sits on the advisory board of the Centre for Social Justice, the Social Mobility Foundation and the Centre for Policy Studies.


In partnership with

National Grid