The next gathering of the World Energy Congressis still over a year away, but you would never guess that by observing the sense of urgency surrounding World Energy Council Chairman Younghoon David Kim’s preparations or the passion with which he speaks on the need to move the energy industry forward. Some readers may not be familiar with the WEC, but the organization’s enormous influence over perhaps the world’s most important commodities ensures that what happens at the World Energy Congress shapes every aspect of the global economy.
A changing industry
In addition to serving as the Chairman of the WEC, Kim is CEO of Korea’s Daesung Group, ensuring that nearly every waking moment is dedicated to solving the myriad looming crises that may threaten the energy market.
Ever the optimist, Kim sees opportunity within these challenges. He aims to use the 2019 gathering of the WEC as a platform to advance the industry in a way that will help it respond to the accelerating pace of change in a market sector that is placing a growing priority on disruption and innovation.
Still, Kim more than has his work cut out for him as he continues to push the famously conservative industry away from overreliance on fossil fuels and towards renewables. This preference for green initiatives calls for a more enthusiastic embrace of creative thinking. Kim believes that in the near future, we will see energy markets driven not primarily by resources or capital, but instead centered on brainpower and technology. According to Kim, “Now, the energy industry is moving from a capital-intensive industry to a knowledge-based industry.” The agenda for next year’s World Energy Congress in Abu Dhabi reflects Kim’s philosophy, with the WEC devoting a full day (out of four total) to a deeper look at future technologies and how they will be financed.
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