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The Global Energy Outlook: The Future of Fossil Fuels

October 06, 2016

Global consumption of fossil fuels has steadily marched upwards for many decades, despite various governments’ attempts to curb their usage, buoying the economies of fossil fuel-exporting countries such as Canada. Yet will this historic trend continue in the future? Future demand for fossil fuels depends in part on the pace of energy technology innovation. Recent technological advances in low carbon energy sources, such as batteries for electric vehicles and renewable power generation, could make alternatives more cost competitive relative to oil and natural gas technologies. The global supply of fossil fuels could also come under pressure if low cost reserves of oil, gas and coal become exhausted. Carbon pricing and other public policies designed to limit greenhouse gas emissions will further make their mark on fossil fuel usage, though the extent is debated.

For expert insights on what the future may hold for Canada’s fossil fuel sector, please join this Idea Forum, “The Global Energy Outlook: The Future of Fossil Fuels”, organized by the Ivey Business School’s Energy Policy and Management Centre.

Event Details

October 6, 2016

4-4:30 p.m. – Registration
4:30-6 p.m. – Expert Panel: The Global Energy Outlook: The Future of Fossil Fuels
6-7 p.m. – Reception (cocktails and appetizers)

Location: Ivey's Tangerine Leadership Centre, King & York St., Toronto
Tickets: $50 (regular), $20 (student rate) 

Full event agenda


Michael Greenstone

Michael Greenstone is the Milton Friedman Professor in Economics, the College, and the Harris School, as well as the Director of the interdisciplinary Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago and the Energy & Environment Lab at the University of Chicago Urban Labs. He previously served as the Chief Economist for President Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers, and currently serves on the Secretary of Energy’s Advisory Board. Greenstone also directed the Brookings Institution’s Hamilton Project, which studies policies to promote economic growth, and has since joined its Advisory Council. He is an elected member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and editor of the Journal of Political Economy. Before coming to Chicago, Mr. Greenstone was the 3M Professor of Environmental Economics at MIT.

Mr. Greenstone’s research estimates the costs and benefits of environmental quality and society’s energy choices. He has worked extensively on the Clean Air Act and examined its impacts on air quality, manufacturing activity, housing prices, and human health to assess its benefits and costs. He is currently engaged in large‐scale projects to estimate the economic costs of climate change and to identify efficient approaches to mitigating these costs.

His research is increasingly focused on developing countries. This work includes an influential paper that demonstrated that high levels of particulates air pollution from coal combustion are causing the 500 million residents of Northern China to lose more than 2.5 billion years of life expectancy. He is also engaged in projects with the Government of India and four Indian state governments that use randomized control trials to test innovative ways to improve the functioning of environmental regulations and increase energy access.

He received a PhD in economics from Princeton University and a BA in economics with High Honors from Swarthmore College.


Steve Carlisle

Stephen K. Carlisle was appointed President and Managing Director of GM Canada on November 20, 2014, returning to Canada over 30 years after first starting his career in Oshawa. During this time, Mr. Carlisle has held a number of senior leadership positions at General Motors that have taken him across the globe, including Vice President of Global Product Planning and Program Management, 2010-2014; Vice President of U.S. Sales Operations, 2010; and President and Managing Director of Southeast Asia Operations, 2007-2010.

Born and raised in Woodstock, Ontario, Mr. Carlisle began his GM career in 1982 as an industrial engineering co-op student at the Oshawa Truck Assembly Plant. After earning a Bachelor of Applied Science in Systems Design Engineering from the University of Waterloo in 1986, his first full-time assignment was in advanced manufacturing engineering, again in Oshawa. After various positions in materials management, he moved to the former Chevrolet-Pontiac-GM group in Warren, Michigan, in 1991, on a special assignment focused on product simplification, followed by a subsequent assignment in advanced product engineering.

In 1995, Mr. Carlisle was appointed Director of the GM Decision Support Center, and in 1996, became program planning director for the Midsize Truck Vehicle Line Executive team, located in Pontiac, Michigan. After progressively more senior roles in Planning and Program Management, he became Executive Director of Program Management for GM North America in 2001, before moving to Asia as the Vice President of Product Planning and Program Management for Asia-Pacific in 2002.

Mr. Carlisle is an active business leader, currently serving on the Ontario Institute for Competitiveness and Prosperity; the Dean's Advisory Council, University of Waterloo Faculty of Engineering; and the Advanced Technology Committee of Canadian Automotive Partnership Council, as Chair. In the past, he has held the position of Chair for the Canadian Vehicle Manufacturers Association, from 2014 to 2016, has served as a member of Business Leaders of Michigan, and has been a member of the Board of Governors for the American Chamber of Commerce in Thailand.


Guy Holburn, Director, Ivey Energy Policy and Management Centre

Guy Holburn is the Suncor Chair in Energy Policy and an Associate Professor of Business, Economics, and Public Policy at the Ivey Business School. His area of expertise is in the intersection of business strategy and public policy. Much of his research is applied to strategy and policy issues in the energy and utilities sectors. He has been awarded major research grants by the Canada Foundation for Innovation, Olin Foundation, the University of California Energy Institute, California Public Utilities Commission, Ontario Centres of Excellence, and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.

He is currently leading a multi-year research program on the regulation of the energy sector in Canada. He has published in leading economics and management journals, and has written for national media. Prior to his academic career, Holburn worked as a management consultant for Bain and Company in the U.K. and South Africa. He received his MA and PhD from the University of California, Berkeley, and his BA Hons. (First Class) from Cambridge University.



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