Session 2.3: Boost Clean Energy Innovation with COVID-19

May 17th, 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic spurred a global cessation of travel, manufacturing, and countless economic activities. This calls for clean energy innovations with immediate responses to the changes and, at the same time, to stimulate innovation for accelerating future sustainable energy transition. This session was organized to review new technologies and solutions to respond to COVID-19 issues, such as new HVAC systems, cold chain development, remote conferences, work at home, etc.


  • The Three 3s: A New Organizing Principle to Save the Planet
    Presenter: Dan Millison, Manager, Transcendergy, L.L.C.
  • Presentation

    A typical human can live for about 3 weeks without food, about 3 days without water, and about 3 minutes without air. Since the beginning of the first industrial revolution, humanity has been systematically destroying the ecosystems which provide food, water, and air (specifically oxygen). An over-abundance of international environmental agreements has failed to stop this destruction, and we are now faced with the 6th great extinction which includes homo sapiens. Focusing on the single tree of climate change while ignoring the broader forest of sustainability results in fat tail outcomes (e.g., VW’s “clean diesel” crimes), and it should be obvious to everyone that the UNFCCC process is not working and will not save the planet. A new organizing principle is needed which focuses on the 3 threes: regenerative agriculture and aquaculture, climate-proof water from the oceans and the atmosphere, and preserving the most critical source of oxygen – the ocean, which accounts for 50-75% of the oxygen we breathe. NDCs and Covid19 recovery plans need to be retooled around the three 3s. No new technology is needed, but imagination and political leadership are imperative.

  • Solar Energy for Resilient Health Infrastructure
    Presenter: Shishir Seth, Chief of Unit(Governance Bodies' meetings and Partnerships), International Solar Alliance
  • Presentation

    Climate Change and epidemics such as COVID 19 pose a significant threat to global community’s ambition for sustainable & holistic development. Health infrastructure is a critical enabler of human & economic development. Lack of access to reliable and cost-effective energy is a roadblock to developing a robust health infrastructure and is frustrating global efforts to bridge ever-widening gulf in health indicators on geographical, income, and gender divides, while straining resources at the tertiary health facilities. Innovative Off-grid Solar Energy applications at the primary care level promise rapid and demonstrable impact on the Sustainable Development Goals 3, 7 and 13. Solar powered Health Centers, vaccine cold storage, mobile health clinics, and digital health services are just some of the possible interventions for last mile delivery of quality and affordable health care. The presentation will focus on ISA CARES initiative of the International Solar Alliance for solarisation of the health sector. The ISA CARES initiative, launched in 2020 in partnership with Health Innovation Exchange (HIEx) founded by the UNAIDS, is envisaged as a holistic and integrated intervention that aims to address Energy-Health nexus through need-based and demand-driven application of solar energy applications for robust and resilient health infrastructure.

  • Disease Resilient, Smart, and Energy-efficient Centralized Air-conditioning (CAC) Systems for Public Buildings in Developing Member Countries
    Presenter: Yash Shukla, Executive Director Centry for Advanced Research in Building Science and Energy, CEPT University
  • Presentation

    Several studies have shown that improper design and operation of central air-conditioning (CAC) systems can increase the risk of airborne transmission of diseases such as COVID-19. In developing member countries (DMC), the risks of disease transmission through CAC systems is even higher due to the use of old air-conditioning equipment, lack of regular maintenance, and overcrowding in closed spaces. In the current context, it is vital to design and operate disease-resilient, smart, and energy-efficient CAC systems.

    This presentation shares key strategies to minimize the risk of airborne transmission through the smart and energy-efficient CAC. The presentation provides recommendations on how to mitigate the risks of virus transmission, and ensure safe working conditions in public buildings located in DMCs by deploying efficient, clean, and smart CAC systems. The presentation will also share a brief overview of the market-ready technologies that can be implemented in the public buildings located in DMC.


  • Lanvin Concessao, Project Associate - Energy Program, World Resources Institute
  • Matt Jordan, Principal, Propel Clean Energy Partners