ASEAN Centre for Energy Meets with State’s Bureau of Energy Resources, and U.S. Office of Presidential Special Envoy for Climate to Explore Collaboration on Energy & Climate Nexus

Jakarta, 8 May 2023

Introducing new opportunities between ASEAN and the Presidential Envoy for Climate, the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Energy Resources, and the U.S. Mission to ASEAN towards a low-emissions future by strengthening regional partnership in climate infrastructure. 

  • The Bureau of Energy Resources (ENR) of the Department of State and The Office of the Special Presidential Envoy from the United States visited the ASEAN Centre for Energy (ACE) office on 8 May 2023 to hold an initial meeting for potential collaboration between US and ASEAN region. 
  • The proposed project, which is related to grid implementation and climate nexus brought up a new opportunity to work together in emphasizing economic prosperity through sustainable, affordable, and reliable energy access. 
  • ACE was represented by the ASEAN Climate Change and Energy Project (ACCEPT); ASEAN Plan of Action on Energy Cooperation (APAEC) Department; and Power, Fossil Fuel, Alternative Energy and Storage (PFS) Department which work under the U.S.’s projects. 

The Bureau of Energy Resources initiates the efforts to employ and implement international energy policy through multilateral diplomacy. The aim of ENR is also to construct best practices across programmatic approaches. Along with the climate-related goal, the bureau also showing their high interest on low-emissions future and the energy security for the United States and other potential partners including ASEAN Centre for Energy (ACE) as a potential Southeast Asia’s partner. 

Supporting the mission on wide spreading the allies and partners, ACE is being selected by the U.S. Mission to ASEAN as the potential research partner for the ASEAN region. The initial meeting discussed potential collaboration with the U.S. Government, the program roadmap for implementing the project, and multilateral negotiation that had been conducted by ACE to interlink the AMS (ASEAN Member States). Henry Fung, the Economic Officer of the U.S. Mission to ASEAN, has shown his interest to cooperate with ACE for the climate change and energy project. In particular, the collaboration will much likely generate a writing result and other supporting publications. He also mentioned that The US President has announced initiatives to support ASEAN member states. Among other initiatives namely the U.S – ASEAN Climate Solution Hub which supports ASEAN energy-climate related. The hub will provide technical assistance to ASEAN countries to accelerate the implementation of their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and related low-emission development and resilience strategies. This demand-driven initiative will support renewable energy deployment, decarbonization of the transportation sector, methane reduction efforts, and sustainable agriculture, forestry, and land management. It will also support the development of energy and land-use frameworks and measures that mobilize public and private finance and achieve just transitions. One of the interesting topics to collaborate with ACE is grid connectivity within regions and the impact on climate.  

Figure 1. ACE, State’s Bureau of Energy Resources, and U.S. Office of Presidential Special Envoy for Climate representatives during the meeting in ACE office.

As a brief introduction, Dynta Trishana Munardi of the APAEC Department presented ACE introduction and APAEC Phase II progress of the seven program areas (PAs). Turns out, the presentation became a turning point that leads to a more insightful discussion. Focusing on Program Area 3 about Clean Coal Technology, Jennifer Schuch-Page, the Senior Advisor of the U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Climate directly shows her concern about ASEAN’s update on coal-related infrastructure as well as the coal reduction utilization. In this case, Beni Suryadi of the PFS department explained the importance of the ASEAN Forum On Coal (AFOC) as the checkpoint for ASEAN member states coal reduction utilization progress. On the other hand, Jennifer Hengstenberg, the Climate Officer of the U.S. Embassy stated her interest to go through ACE to focus on grid connectivity to achieve the decarbonization goals and renewable energy injection.  

The next presentation was handled by Muhammad Shidiq of ACCEPT project. He emphasized more on ACCEPT II outcomes, which consist of three focal points that might be a promising cooperation with the state: 

  • Advanced knowledge sharing on energy and climate nexus in ASEAN 
  • Enhanced ASEAN’s capacity as Low-Carbon Economy towards carbon neutrality (net zero) 
  • Strengthened regional structure, capacity, and gender equality on energy-climate nexus 

Triggered by the material, Garret Barnicoat, the Indo-Pacific Team Lead of U.S. Department of State of the Bureau of Energy Resource proposed to pair the female leader in ASEAN and the U.S. to construct a powerful women program in climate-related activity. Furthermore, there is a big interest in enhancing coal and renewable energy efficiency in the potential program. Hopefully, the initial discussion among the parties will bring a positive response and potential collaboration for a sustainable and empowering energy-climate project among the parties. 


Detailed information on ACCEPT II can be found at https://accept.aseanenergy.org/   

ACCEPT welcomes any collaboration, please feel free to contact us at [email protected]  

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