Cleaning Up. Leadership in an age of climate change.

Ep20: Richenda Van Leeuwen 'A Life of Energy Access and Inclusion'

Episode Summary

As a 10 year old girl, Richenda Van Leeuwen saw a solar panel at the Centre of Alternative Technology on a rainy day in Wales. This would serve as her first point of inspiration for the career ahead of her. Now, she is the Executive Director of Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs. In the 20th episode of Cleaning Up, Michael and Richenda cover gender balance in the energy sector, the crucial role electricity access plays in providing healthcare in the Global South as well as ways to ensure that local economies are the beneficiaries of growth in emerging markets. Bio Richenda joined the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE) as Executive Director after serving as Managing Director for Empowering Clean Economies at the Rocky Mountain Institute, and previously chairing the International Institutions at the Global LPG Partnership where she led work on clean cooking energy solutions in developing economies. She was also a member of the World Bank’s Energy Program’s (ESMAP) Technical Advisory Group from 2016-2019. Prior to that, between 2010-2016 Richenda was Executive Director of Energy Access at the United Nations Foundation, working on development of the UN Sustainable Energy for All Initiative, and founding and leading a 2,300-member global off-grid renewable energy practitioner network. Richenda previously served for nearly five years as CEO of Trickle Up, a global microenterprise development organization and has worked in private equity and impact investing in renewable energy in emerging markets, as well as early in her career on humanitarian post conflict reconstruction in the Balkans. She is a board director of SELCO India and Energy 4 Impact and an Emeritus founding U.S. Women “Clean Energy Ambassador” within the U.S. DOE Clean Energy, Education and Empowerment (C3E) initiative established within the Clean Energy Ministerial. For several years she served as a member of the Selection Committee for the Zayed Future Energy Prize. Richenda earned her MBA and BSc (Hons) in Geography from Durham University, UK. Key links Official Bio: https://www.aspeninstitute.org/our-people/richenda-van-leeuwen/ UNDP launches global call to action encouraging nature-based solutions for sustainable development (23rd Sep 2020) https://www.undp.org/content/undp/en/home/news-centre/news/2020/undp-launches-global-call-to-action-encouraging-nature-based-sol.html Centre for Alternative Technology https://www.cat.org.uk/ How to power a resilient future across the Caribbean (9th Sep 2020) https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2020/09/how-to-power-a-resilient-future-across-the-caribbean/ Powering Health across Africa through COVID-19 and a Changing Climate (7th May 2020) https://rmi.org/powering-health-across-africa-through-covid-19-and-a-changing-climate/ Op-Ed: DER solutions serve health facilities’ energy needs in SSA (12th May 2020) https://www.esi-africa.com/industry-sectors/renewable-energy/op-ed-der-solutions-serve-health-facilities-energy-needs-in-ssa/ Renewable Energy Leader Dr. Kandeh Yumkella Joins Rocky Mountain Institute (11th of Feb 2020) https://www.benzinga.com/pressreleases/20/02/n15302721/renewable-energy-leader-dr-kandeh-yumkella-joins-rocky-mountain-institute About Cleaning Up Once a week Michael Liebreich has a conversation (and a drink) with a leader in clean energy, mobility, climate finance or sustainable development. Each episode covers the technical ground on some aspect of the low-carbon transition – but it also delves into the nature of leadership in the climate transition: whether to be optimistic or pessimistic; how to communicate in order to inspire change; personal credos; and so on. And it should be fun – most of the guests are Michael’s friends. Follow Cleaning Up on Twitter: [https://twitter.com/MLCleaningUp](https://twitter.com/MLCleaningUp) Follow Cleaning Up on Linkedin: [https://www.linkedin.com/company/cleaning-up-with-michael-liebreich](https://www.linkedin.com/company/cleaning-up-with-michael-liebreich) Follow Cleaning Up on Facebook: [https://www.facebook.com/MLCleaningUp](https://www.facebook.com/MLCleaningUp) Links to other Podcast Platforms: [https://www.cleaningup.live/](https://www.cleaningup.live/)

Episode Notes

As a 10 year old girl, Richenda Van Leeuwen saw a solar panel at the Centre of Alternative Technology on a rainy day in Wales. This would serve as her first point of inspiration for the career ahead of her. Now, she is the Executive Director of Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs. In the 20th episode of Cleaning Up, Michael and Richenda cover gender balance in the energy sector, the crucial role electricity access plays in providing healthcare in the Global South as well as ways to ensure that local economies are the beneficiaries of growth in emerging markets.  

 

 

Bio

Richenda joined the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE) as Executive Director after serving as Managing Director for Empowering Clean Economies at the Rocky Mountain Institute, and previously chairing the International Institutions at the Global LPG Partnership where she led work on clean cooking energy solutions in developing economies. She was also a member of the World Bank’s Energy Program’s (ESMAP) Technical Advisory Group from 2016-2019.  

 

Prior to that, between 2010-2016 Richenda was Executive Director of Energy Access at the United Nations Foundation, working on development of the UN Sustainable Energy for All Initiative, and founding and leading a 2,300-member global off-grid renewable energy practitioner network. Richenda previously served for nearly five years as CEO of Trickle Up, a global microenterprise development organization and has worked in private equity and impact investing in renewable energy in emerging markets, as well as early in her career on humanitarian post conflict reconstruction in the Balkans.

 

She is a board director of SELCO India and Energy 4 Impact and an Emeritus founding U.S. Women “Clean Energy Ambassador” within the U.S. DOE Clean Energy, Education and Empowerment (C3E) initiative established within the Clean Energy Ministerial. For several years she served as a member of the Selection Committee for the Zayed Future Energy Prize. Richenda earned her MBA and BSc (Hons) in Geography from Durham University, UK.  

 

Key links

 

Official Bio: https://www.aspeninstitute.org/our-people/richenda-van-leeuwen/        

 

 

 

UNDP launches global call to action encouraging nature-based solutions for sustainable development (23rd Sep 2020)

 

https://www.undp.org/content/undp/en/home/news-centre/news/2020/undp-launches-global-call-to-action-encouraging-nature-based-sol.html

 

 

 

Centre for Alternative Technology

 

https://www.cat.org.uk/  

 

 

 

How to power a resilient future across the Caribbean (9th Sep 2020)

 

https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2020/09/how-to-power-a-resilient-future-across-the-caribbean/

 

 

 

Powering Health across Africa through COVID-19 and a Changing Climate (7th May 2020)

 

https://rmi.org/powering-health-across-africa-through-covid-19-and-a-changing-climate/

 

 

 

Op-Ed: DER solutions serve health facilities’ energy needs in SSA (12th May 2020)

 

https://www.esi-africa.com/industry-sectors/renewable-energy/op-ed-der-solutions-serve-health-facilities-energy-needs-in-ssa/  

 

 

 

Renewable Energy Leader Dr. Kandeh Yumkella Joins Rocky Mountain Institute (11th of Feb 2020)

 

https://www.benzinga.com/pressreleases/20/02/n15302721/renewable-energy-leader-dr-kandeh-yumkella-joins-rocky-mountain-institute  

 

 

 

 

About Cleaning Up

 

Once a week Michael Liebreich has a conversation (and a drink) with a leader in clean energy, mobility, climate finance or sustainable development.

 

Each episode covers the technical ground on some aspect of the low-carbon transition – but it also delves into the nature of leadership in the climate transition: whether to be optimistic or pessimistic; how to communicate in order to inspire change; personal credos; and so on.

 

And it should be fun – most of the guests are Michael’s friends.

 

Follow Cleaning Up on Twitter: [https://twitter.com/MLCleaningUp](https://twitter.com/MLCleaningUp)

 

Follow Cleaning Up on Linkedin: [https://www.linkedin.com/company/cleaning-up-with-michael-liebreich](https://www.linkedin.com/company/cleaning-up-with-michael-liebreich)

 

Follow Cleaning Up on Facebook: [https://www.facebook.com/MLCleaningUp](https://www.facebook.com/MLCleaningUp)

 

Links to other Podcast Platforms: [https://www.cleaningup.live/](https://www.cleaningup.live/)