Events Energy Symposium 2021


Energy Symposium 2021

Climate change has been described as one of the greatest leadership challenges of our time and sustainability has become the buzzword no matter which industry you operate in.

Members of the Institute of Directors are responsible leaders who often can have more social impact than the average person. That is why, in partnership with SONI, we are delighted to invite you to join us for the very first virtual IoD & SONI Energy Symposium.

The main aim of this virtual event – which takes place just ahead of COP26 in Glasgow will be to help business leaders explore how their organisations can step up to their responsibilities in tackling climate change and build sustainable businesses.

We are delighted that confirmed speakers include: Lord Deben, Chair of the Committee on Climate Change; Chris Grigg CBE, Chair of Infrastructure Bank UK; Minister Gordon Lyons MLA, Northern Ireland Economy Minister; Irish environmental scientist, policy advisor and science communicator, Dr Tara Shine; Alan Campbell, Managing Director, SONI to name but a few.

Key details

Date & time: 19 Oct 2021 09:00 - 11:30
Location: Online webinar, Online

Prices from

No Charge.


The RT Hon. Lord Deben
Chair of the Committee on Climate Change


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.  

Dr Tara Shine
Irish environmental scientist, policy advisor and science communicator 


Dr Tara Shine is an expert with over 20 years’ experience in the fields of climate change, environment and sustainable development. Her clients include the Mary Robinson Foundation – Climate Justice, The Elders, governments, multilateral agencies and civil society organisations. Tara has negotiated for the EU in at the United Nations, informed climate and environment policy at national and international level and advocated for equity and justice in global agreements.

Dr Shine is co-founder of the community initiative Plastic Free Kinsale which has mobilised a town of 5,000 people and a social media audience of half a million people to find alternatives to single use plastics. She is Director of the social enterprise, Change by Degrees which promotes convenient sustainability for communities and businesses.

Tara presents wildlife and nature documentaries for the BBC and RTE. Her most recent series A Wild Irish Year, produced by award winning Crossing The Line Films, aired on RTE 1 in May 2018. She is the first woman living in Ireland to be selected for the global leadership programme for women in science, Homeward Bound. As part of this programme she will travel to Antarctica for a 3-week expedition in January 2019.

Chris Grigg CBE
Chair of Infrastructure Bank UK


Chris is the Chair of the UK Infrastructure Bank. He has held a range of leadership roles including Chief Executive of Barclays Commercial Bank and, most recently, Chief Executive of The British Land Company PLC, a position he held for over 11 years. 
Chris has more than 30 years’ experience in the banking and real estate industries. He was formerly a partner at Goldman Sachs and a former member of the executive board of the European Public Real Estate Association, and the board of the British Property Federation.
He holds an MA in Economics from Cambridge University.

Host: Jamie Delargy


Jamie Delargy has forged a career in business journalism telling it as it is.
His was one of only a few voices warning ten years ago of the risks from an overheated housing market. On a more positive note, he has consistently offered critical support for the introduction here of a reduced rate of corporation tax.

In 2014 he launched Northern Ireland’s first user-friendly energy price comparison website, which in addition to uncovering the best electricity deals provides a wealth of information about the energy market. He is currently carrying out research into the use of solar energy to dry firewood. A third generation prototype device is being developed with a view to a launch on the market of a flatpack version. Jamie began his career in journalism working in the Irish News before moving to Downtown Radio. In 1980 he joined UTV. Since then he has worked on and edited current affairs and consumer programmes, before moving back to news.

Alan Campbell
Managing Director, SONI


Alan Campbell was appointed as Managing Director of SONI in June 2021, following 9 months in the role in an interim capacity.  Alan was appointed to the SONI Board in December 2020.

He joined SONI in July 2017, as Head of Grid Infrastructure Projects and Connections, from ESB where he was responsible for managing its 400MW Coolkeeragh Power Station in the North West.  Alan graduated from Queen’s University Belfast with a First Class Honours degree in Mechanical Engineering and began his career at AstraZeneca in England before joining ESB. Alan has more than 20 years’ experience working in the electricity industry.

Professor Jason A. Lowe OBE
Principal Fellow/Head of Climate Services for Government at the Met Office


Professor Jason A. Lowe OBE, is Chair in Interdisciplinary Climate Research, Priestley Centre, University of Leeds, and also Principal Fellow/Head of Climate Services for Government at the Met Office. Jason has over 20 years experience as a climate researcher and research leader, contributing to over 200 publications on a diverse range of subjects relevant to both climate mitigation and adaptation.

He recently led the UKCP project, which developed innovative new climate scenarios for the UK, and is now being used extensively in the latest UK Climate Change Risk Assessment. Internationally, Jason has contributed to all three working groups of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, and many UN climate reports.

Sam McCloskey Bsc, MSc, FEI
Director of Sustainability & Climate Resilience, Tetra Tech Europe

Recently appointed to Tetra Tech, Sam has spent 17 years in consultancy followed by the last 10 years leading a collaborative, industry focused, sustainable energy research centre. She can call upon broad ranging experience of managing energy, sustainability and resource efficiency projects across a number of industry sectors, from local to pan-European projects, and with a strong focus on strategic oversight.

Sam was Northern Ireland Manager of the ERDF funded Envirowise programme for over a decade. As a member of the MATRIX government science advisory panel for sustainable energy, she was intrinsically involved in the development of a Road Map for sustainable energy to 2035 in Northern Ireland. She has recently been appointed to the Northern Ireland Circular Economy Coalition, supporting the Department of the Economy in setting a regional circular economy strategy. She is a Non-Executive Director of the Workspace Group, one of the largest social enterprise organisations in Northern Ireland and a Fellow of the Energy Institute.

Minister Gordon Lyons MLA
Northern Ireland Economy Minister


Gordon Lyons was appointed as Minister for the Economy on 6 July 2021.

Mr Lyons previously held the Northern Ireland Assembly positions of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs Minister, Junior Minister in The Executive Office, deputy chair of the Health Committee and chair of the Committee on Procedures.

The Economy Minister’s responsibilities include economic policy, higher and further education, employment and skills programmes, employment rights, consumer affairs, energy, telecoms, tourism, minerals and petroleum, European Fund management, Insolvency Service, Credit Unions and Societies, and statistics and economic research.

John French CDir
Chief Executive, Utility Regulator 


John French became Chief Executive of the Utility Regulator in November 2020. Prior to joining the Utility Regulator, John was Chief Executive of The Consumer Council from July 2015.

Before this, John was Director of Regulation and Pricing at firmus energy, Investment Planning and Regulatory Reporting Manager at NIE Networks, Head of Policy at the UK Business Council for Sustainable Energy, Network Director at the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership in Vienna, and a diplomatic policy advisor on climate change and energy issues within the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

John is a Chartered Director, Chartered Manager, and a Fellow of the Institute of Directors. He has a Master’s Degree in Accountancy, and an Honours Degree in Accountancy and Business Finance, both from the University of Dundee.



The event will start on: Tue 19 Oct 2021 - 9:00am

From 9:00am ending at 11:30am

Venue: Online

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