Summary of Second Meeting of the Energy Resilience Task Force (ERTF)
EWG51, Canberra, Australia
May 11, 2016
EWG Lead Shepherd Dr. Phyllis Yoshida welcomed EWG delegates to the meeting, and noted her recent discussions with the Chair of the Emergency Preparedness Working Group at the Senior Officials meeting in Lima regarding joint collaboration between the two groups on energy resilience. Such collaboration will help provide a more comprehensive response to addressing the threats posed by climate change and natural and man-made disasters.
Discussion of TOR and Implementation Plan
The ERTF meeting was led by U.S. Co-Chair Mr. Dan Ton from U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability. Mr. Ton reviewed the draft Terms of Reference and Implementation Plan that had been circulated to APEC economies prior to the meeting for review and comment. Economies endorsed both documents. A final agenda for the meeting was distributed, reviewed, and accepted.
APERC asked whether broader energy security issues, particularly on oil and gas supply disruptions, should be part of the ERTF’s mandate. Some economies noted that while energy security overlaps with energy resilience, it includes broader issues that go beyond the more narrow scope of the ERTF. Following a discussion among economies, the EWG decided that the energy security work, particularly APERC’s Oil and Gas Security Initiative (OGSI), would be more appropriately handled in another sub-group, perhaps the Expert Group on Clean Fossil Energy (EGCFE). As such, the TOR of the EGCFE should be revised and/or updated during the EWG52 to incorporate the OGSI undertakings. It was also proposed that the next EGCFE meeting should be held on the margins of EWG52.
Singapore inquired about the inclusion of cybersecurity under the ERTF’s mandate given the importance of this issue to resilience to man-made disasters. The U.S. noted that since cybersecurity was part of manmade threats, it was included under the ERTF mandate. The U.S. also noted that cybersecurity could be an interesting area for cross-fora collaboration, perhaps with the Telecommunications and Counterterrorism Working Groups, and that the ERTF could look into doing something specific on cybersecurity for the grid.
Follow up from ERTF 1
The group decided that the ERTF members would comprise of EWG representatives, as the meetings will be held on the margins of the EWG meetings. However, economies are welcome to add additional experts to the group. The Task Force also decided that the best way to share information, best practices, and updates on energy resilience issues is through the ESCI Knowledge Sharing Platform (KSP). Chinese Taipei agreed to ask the KSP managers to add an Energy Resilience section to the KSP for this purpose as it is complementary to the current ESCI KSP pillars.
- Energy Resiliency in APEC Economies
Australia: Australia provided an update on its domestic energy resilience measures. Given the high number of natural and man-made disasters, including bushfires, droughts and storms, Australia has established a network among the Australian Government, State and Territory Governments, and asset owners and operators to address challenges to critical energy infrastructure through an integrated approach. Through its Critical Infrastructure Resilience Strategy and Trusted Information Sharing Network (TISN), Australia has encouraged a robust public-private partnership to share information and develop solutions across energy sectors.
Singapore: Singapore noted its key focus on grid resiliency through 1) infrastructure planning to meet future demand, 2) maintenance and upgrading of power generation and supply networks, 3) emergency response and cybersecurity to address natural and man-made threats to critical infrastructure, and 4) manpower resilience to ensure a skilled workforce. Singapore also noted that the only viable renewable energy option is solar energy, which is intermittent. Singapore is looking at ways to prepare the grid to integrate solar energy in the future, and has established an energy storage research and development program. On manpower resilience, Lead Shepherd added that cross-border mobility of power engineers for emergency response was also a key issue when qualifications of such engineers were not recognized across jurisdictions. The APEC Secretariat suggested that the EWG work with the Business Mobility Group to look into cross-border qualifications to increase mobility of emergency preparedness practitioners.
Thailand: Thailand noted its ongoing collaboration with the IEA on emergency preparedness training and response exercises. Thailand is a net importer of gas from neighboring economies for generating electricity. When domestic terminals or offshore gas fields in neighboring economies are shut down for repair, the government must provide other resources to generate electricity. Thailand noted that disruptions or grid accidents are an important area for collaboration among APEC economies.
- APEC Energy Resiliency Projects and Activities Updates
New Zealand: New Zealand provided a readout of the March Asia-Pacific Energy Leaders’ Summit hosted by the World Energy Council (WEC) and the BusinessNZ Energy Council in Wellington. This industry-led event addressed energy resilience challenges and noted some key areas where further discussion is needed, including the need for greater multidisciplinary and cross-sectoral approaches; de-risking insurance and increasing confidence for investment; and long-term mechanisms for financing energy resilience needs. The hosts are interested in further engagement on this issue and encourage other economies to consider hosting a similar event in the future. Mr. Ton suggested that perhaps an energy resilience summit could be held every two years.
Philippines: Mr. Ton provided an update of the Workshop on Improving Energy Resiliency in Off-Grid Areas on behalf of the Philippines delegation. The objective of the workshop planned for June in Boracay is to exchange experiences on energy resiliency, recommend actions to strengthen energy resiliency in off-grid areas, explore innovations on power systems, and develop and disseminate guidelines to improve resiliency of energy facilities. Topics will include policies, regulations and laws, programs and pilot projects, institutional arrangements and coordination, financing energy resiliency, the role of women in developing energy resiliency and energy water nexus.
China: China provided an update on the EWG Project for Solar Powered Emergency Shelter Solutions (SPESS) which will consider both off-grid and on-grid scenarios. The project will develop a technology list and will seek to develop a prototype of an SPESS.
Japan: Japan provided an update on its EWG project on Quality of Electric Power Infrastructure, which seeks to develop best practices focused on performance; stable supply; preventing forced outages and recovery; and environmental, social and safety considerations. Thus far, the project overseers have developed a draft guideline with 13 indicators to measure “quality,” and will hold a second workshop in Tokyo in the July/August timeframe.
APERC: APERC presented various updates under the OGSI, including the December 2015 Oil and Gas Security Exercise held in the Philippines. Three stages of the oil and natural gas emergency scenario were presented including 1) a man-made disaster, 2) a natural disaster in the Philippines, and 3) a natural disaster disruption in the exporting economy, Chinese Taipei. From the exercise, invited experts formulated recommendations for contingency planning for the oil and gas supply emergency scenario. Future exercises are being considered for Australia in 2016 and Peru in 2017.
- Energy Resiliency Task Force Work Program / Collaboration with other APEC and Non-APEC Fora
The Task Force discussed the three agreed initial work streams of the Implementation Plan, which include grid resilience, strengthening infrastructure and the energy-water nexus. The co-chair requested economies to volunteer to take the lead on the various work streams in the Implementation Plan. To support grid resilience, the United States offered to develop a webinar on grid resilience through the Clean Energy Ministerial’s Clean Energy Solutions Center, and will prepare a project proposal for holding an Energy Resilience Summit in 2018. In addition, the United States will begin to develop a framework document for energy resilience to establish a common pathway for APEC economies. On energy-water nexus issues, the United States recalled the U.S. self-funded EWG project (presented at the first ERTF meeting) on energy water nexus issues across the APEC region and noted some potential areas for future work. The U.S. said they would lead the energy-water nexus work stream. The co-chairs will engage various APEC economies to seek ideas for further collaboration.
APEC Cross-For a Collaboration
The Task Force agreed on the importance of cross-for a collaboration on areas relevant to energy resilience. The United States offered to work with the Philippines co-chair to canvas complementary work being done in other APEC Working Groups to present at the next ERTF meeting to determine where joint efforts can be taken.
IEA: The IEA noted a new Energy Climate Change Report to be published in the near future as well as an upcoming event on June 7th organized with NRCan support in Canada under the IEA’s Climate Change-Energy Nexus Forum series. The June workshop will focus on energy resilience examples in North America, financing of investments, opportunities for policies and opportunities for greater engagement. The IEA agreed to share lessons learned from this workshop at the next ERTF meeting.
WEC: WEC noted its ongoing work related to financing resilient infrastructure, energy-water-food nexus issues, cyber risks, and extreme weather events, which can help complement the work of the ERTF. WEC has assembled case studies for 19 APEC economies and continues to do more work in this area that can be shared with the ERTF and EWG at future meetings.
Administration and Operation
The next meeting of the ERTF was then discussed. The 3rd meeting of the ERTF will be held in Moscow, Russia in October 2016, alongside EWG 52.
The Chair asked if there was any other business, there being none, the ERTF Chair thanked Australia for hosting the meeting and closed the second meeting of the APEC Energy Resiliency Task Force. Meeting minutes will be distributed and approved out of session.