International Conference on Renewable Energy Hosted at Queen’s

Published on: 2010/11/08 - in Science & Tech

Global experts in the fields of renewable energy and energy and environmental policy were at Queen’s University this weekend for the first official workshop of the Matariki Network of Universities (MNU).

Scholars from seven prestigious post-secondary institutions presented new research in energy and energy policy, and explored opportunities for future collaboration with other participants.

Institutions sent up to four delegates from among its renewable energy experts, and were encouraged to send a delegation with balanced representation from natural sciences or engineering and from the humanities or social sciences.

In addition to the faculty contingent, the Universities were also invited to send up to four students as delegates. The student participation was added to complement the group’s focus on the synergy between research and teaching.

“Switching to renewable energy means that we’re on a path to energy independence and security,” says Queen’s Professor Warren Mabee, who presented at the conference. “And that’s going to mean a lot in the future.”

John Dixon, Queen’s Vice-Provost (International) added “Sustainability of energy supply and use has emerged as a priority for the university, as it has for much of the world. We look forward to exchanging ideas and learning from international best practises both in research and in application.”

Sustainability is also a priority for Kingston, which has adopted the goal of being Canada’s most sustainable city and this week enforced that intent with the nomination of Ted Hsu to replace the current Federal member of Parliament, Peter Milliken, who announced his retirement this summer. Ted Hsu is the Executive Director of SWITCH, a local not-for-profit sustainable energy association instrumental in organizing Kingston’s “1000 solar Rooftops Challenge“.

City administrators and Kingston Economic Development Corporation (KEDCO) representatives also attended the conference, which took place from NOvember 5 until the 7th, with the city also hosting delegates at a reception in Fort Henry.

The Queen’s workshop was the first in what MNU members hope will be a series of collaborations. Attending universities also intend to further promote the development of ideas through student and faculty exchanges.

“Along with our partners in the MNU, Queen’s is committed to making a difference in the world through the exchange of ideas, expertise and best international practice,” says Queen’s Principal Daniel Woolf. “This collaboration will strengthen our commitment to a common culture of excellence in research and scholarship.”

MNU members are a select international group of world renowned universities, with each member leading international best practice in research and education based on long academic traditions. The seven founding partners include Queen’s University as well as Dartmouth College in the USA, Durham University in the UK, University of Otago in New Zealand, University of Tübingen in Germany, University of Western Australia (UWA), and Uppsala University in Sweden.

More Information: Matariki Network of Universities