Receptions in Hawaii and DC Held in Collaboration with Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Foundation (OIST Foundation) and the Pacific International Center for High Technology Research (PICHTR)

On March 3, the U.S.-Japan Council, Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Foundation (OIST Foundation) and the Pacific International Center for High Technology Research (PICHTR) held a reception as a follow-up discussion to a February 28 webinar titled “Japan’s and the United States’ Quest to Achieve a Carbon-Free Power Sector: Necessary Breakthroughs in Policy, Science and Technology, and Business Models.”

The reception featured a keynote from Yoh Kawanami, Ph.D., Director at Hawaiian Electric, who spoke about their goal of reducing carbon emissions from power generation by 70% by the year 2030. Mr. Kawanami also spoke about the role of distributed renewable energy in helping with Japan’s decarbonization in the power sector. Following Mr. Kawanami’s keynote, Naoki Nagai facilitated a robust discussion on Hawaiian Electric’s carbon emissions reductions goal and explored the concept of a “business climate pledge” that would support other companies in setting their own corporate emissions reductions goals and the United States’ and Japan’s ambitions to decarbonize the power sector. PICHTR CEO Dennis Teranishi provided further comments and insight on renewable energy in Hawaii and Japan. 

USJC President & CEO Suzanne Basalla also led a group discussion and networking luncheon on March 22 in order to continue the important discussion on climate cooperation with contemporary thought leaders in Washington, D.C. where she was joined by thought leaders from DC think tanks and nonprofit organizations. Topics of discussion included U.S.-Japan bilateral partnership on Asia-Pacific regional climate cooperation and investments, advanced energy technologies, nature-based climate solutions and more.