It was an extraordinary honor to attend the 26th World Gas Conference – the largest and most prestigious conference in the global gas industry calendar – in Paris, France last week. More than 4,000 natural gas industry professionals – leading energy players and decision makers from 100 countries from all over the globe – gathered to discuss current and future industry developments.
Much of the conference took place in the Palais des Sports at the Porte de Versailles. The opening ceremony was truly a sight to behold as was the venue the Grand Palais. Conference attendees were also invited to a concert at Sainte-Chapelle, featuring the Orchestre Classik Ensemble.
More than 500 speakers were on hand, including several from the United States delegation:
- David Carroll, President Gas Technology Institute and IGU President
- Terry D. McCallister, AGA Chairman and chairman & CEO, WGL Holdings, Inc.
- Colette D. Honorable, Commissioner, U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
- Robin Dunnigan, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Energy Diplomacy, U.S. State Department
- Dr. Paula Gant, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Oil and Natural Gas, U.S. Department of Energy
- John S. Watson, Chairman of the Board, Chevron Corporation
- Rex Tillerson, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Exxon Mobil Corporation
Numerous American Gas Association (AGA) staff members participated in panel discussions, including Lori Traweek, Chris McGill, Kimberly Denbow, Andrew Soto, Tracy Burleson and myself.
At the conclusion of the conference, the U.S., through AGA, accepted the Presidency of the International Gas Union (IGU). The U.S. will lead the organization for a three year term which will conclude with the 27th World Gas Conference in June 2018 in Washington, D.C. This conference will be an incredible opportunity to showcase the American natural gas industry and I am pleased to serve as chairman of the 2018 World Gas Conference National Organizing Committee.
The IGU is made up of the gas industries of 91 nations and its mission is to advocate natural gas as an integral part of a sustainable global energy system, and to promote the political, technical and economic progress of the gas industry. The more than 140 members of IGU are associations and corporations of the gas industry representing over 95 percent of the global gas market. The organization provides opportunities for more than 1,000 members of the global gas community to share best practices and engage in discussions relating to all segments of the natural gas value chain.