New op-ed in Corporate Knights, “How COVID-19 innovation can teach us to build back greener”

Phil recently co-authored an op-ed with David Winickoff from the OECD that was published in Corporate Knights.

This op-ed was inspired by the OECD Report by David that Phil contributed to, “Collaborative platforms for innovation in advanced materials” that was released in December 2020.

The op-ed describes the lessons learned from innovation to rapidly produce COVID19 vaccines and how we can use those lessons to tackle climate change.

You can read the entire op-ed here.

TEDxToronto Talk

Phil recently gave a live virtual TEDxToronto talk as part of the TEDxToronto Uncharted Series.

Hosted on cutting-edge live event platform Venue, TEDxToronto’s new format was a runaway success in Fall 2020 with almost 1,900 registrants, making for standout events in a digitally dominated calendar. The innovative, interactive virtual experiences put community-building first, featuring exclusive access to breakout sessions with the speakers where conversation amongst fellow curious souls continues.

“Our first speaker slate explored deep themes such as issues in our food and childcare systems, how to become a better ally and live an authentic life, humanizing AI and economics, and the effects of COVID-19 on our communities and globally,” co-hosts Gillian Cameron and Kapil Khimdas explain. “Our next group of speakers – made up of some of our community’s brightest change-makers – will continue the essential discussion around how we can continue to navigate the Uncharted waters we all find ourselves in.”

The speakers for TEDxToronto’s Winter digital event series are as follows:

Paul Sun-Hyung Lee, Actor & Comedian (February 4th)

  •  Paul Sun-Hyung Lee is a two-time Canadian Screen Award winner for Best Actor in a Comedy Series for his performance as family patriarch Appa in Kim’s Convenience. A self-professed nerd, he is a collector of movies, all things Star Wars, and an avid replica prop builder and cosplayer. Most recently, Paul has appeared in The Mandalorian and as a voice actor for Abby Hatcher, Fuzzly Catcher.

Phil De Luna, Clean Energy Innovator (February 4th)

  • Phil De Luna leads a $57M collaborative research program to develop disruptive technologies to decarbonize Canada at the National Research Council of Canada. Phil’s mission is to help Canada achieve net-zero GHG emissions by 2050 by making renewable fuels from air and water. Listed on Forbes’ Top 30 Under 30, Phil is the youngest-ever director in NRC’s over 100-year history.

Lydia-Joi Marshall, Researcher & Health Equity Champion (February 4th) 

  • Lydia-Joi Marshall is a passionate health care professional and researcher endeavouring to foster healthy business relationships and continuously serve as a bridge between the scientific community and the general public. Lydia-Joi is the Vice President of the Black Health Alliance and a Research Associate for #TheActionProject at University Health Network.

Chenny Xia, Entrepreneur & Experience Designer (February 4th)

  • Chenny Xia is an experience designer, technologist, and serial entrepreneur focused on creating a more equitable healthcare system through decolonization. As the co-founder of Gotcare, she’s transforming how home health is delivered across Canada by leveraging emerging technologies and design thinking methods to reduce the cost of care delivery.

Keynote Speech at the People Around the World Conference – University of Saskatchewan

Phil recently gave a keynote address, “Is Net-Zero by 2050 Possible?” at the People Around the World (PAW) conference in Saskatchewan.

The focus of the 4th annual People Around the World (PAW) Conference was on how to meet the UN 2030 agenda. This year’s online event promises an exchange of innovative ideas, strategies, and collaborative efforts focused on re-examining the solutions required to address the Decade of Action and implementation of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).  

Bay Street Bull Op-Ed on Cleantech

Phil recently published an opinion editorial on Bay Street Bull, “The Cleantech Opportunity in a Post-COVID-19 World” about cleantech and our potential for a green recovery.

You can read the entire piece below:

COVID-19 is the ultimate short-term shock, shuttering economies overnight and claiming hundreds of thousands of lives over the past year. In less than a year we went from sequencing the genome of a novel coronavirus to developing vaccines with >90% efficacy. Governments sprang into action, spending billions to ensure that economies and societies did not collapse. Science has come to the rescue, with the countries that relied and acted on the advice of public health officials faring better than others. 

Many have suffered and some more than others, especially women, youth, and other minority groups, but things could have been so much worse if we had not acted. The response has been nothing short of incredible.

Another shock is coming, and this one is a drawn-out slow burn. Inevitably every country will be impacted by the perilous effects of climate change, with the most vulnerable having the most to lose. As wealthy countries have a moral obligation to share vaccines with those less fortunate, they too have a moral obligation to decarbonize their economies to mitigate negative global climate impacts.  

While the pandemic has temporarily decreased emissions as the world stayed home under quarantine, these gains are only temporary and there are already signs that emissions may come roaring back when the pandemic is over.  

To address climate change and reach our net-zero by 2050 goals, we need to rapidly develop and scale technologies that will help us decarbonize our economies. Half the emissions reductions need to reach these goals rely on technologies that are not yet commercial. We have a lot of work to do and the scale is massive, but so is the opportunity. 

Developing clean technologies is not only good for our planet, but it’s great business too. In 2020 cleantech outperformed other sectors and doubled its worth on the TSX. In contrast, stocks of fossil fuel-based companies plummeted as demand for oil and gas dried up. Shell’s CEO has said that oil demand has already peaked and is focusing on transitioning the company towards low-carbon energy. Large investors and venture capitalists are taking note. BlackRock, with $7 trillion under management, altered their 2021 stewardship principles to focus on environmental and social priorities as core to its investment approach. The Bill Gates-led Breakthrough Energy Ventures just raised another $1 billion to invest in high-risk cleantech companies. 

Even with the immediate threat of a pandemic, governments around the world have announced ambitious climate plans and targets with a strong emphasis to build back greener and better. In December, the Government of Canada released its much anticipated national hydrogen strategy to decarbonize hard-to-abate sectors like transportation and heavy industry. They also announced a rise in the carbon price from $30 per tonne today to $170 per tonne by 2030. US President Joe Biden has also made addressing climate change core to his agenda with an ambitious $1.7 trillion climate plan that includes carbon-free electricity by 2035, rejoining the Paris Climate Accord on day one, and appointing John Kerry as Special Presidential Envoy for Climate. 

Canada already has many advantages that could give us a head start in the cleantech revolution. Our electricity is already relatively emissions-free with 60 percent coming from hydroelectricity—Canada has the most lakes of any country after all. We have strong post-secondary institutions and national labs that develop innovative breakthroughs in clean technology. Our problem has always been getting these innovations to scale. 

The swell of momentum around taking action on climate change is palpable. To capitalize on this, Canadian companies and investors need to be more willing to adopt new clean technologies into their existing supply chains and operations. Every company in every sector needs to develop a serious plan for lowering emissions meaningfully or contributing to the transition we are share. The private sector needs to lengthen their time horizons and increase their patience for return. Cleantech is capital intensive and requires big machines and materials to build. In contrast, you only need a laptop, a talented programmer, and a killer idea to make the next digital technology unicorn. We need to create demand and a robust Canadian market for the made-in-Canada cleantech innovations we develop. The government can have a role to jump-start this with procurement, but industry and the private sector need to step up for these technologies to really scale.

Eventually, COVID-19 will be behind us. We’ll be rejoicing in the streets, the bars, and concert halls that we’ve all missed so dearly. However, we cannot be complacent with our victory and instead double down on the science and innovation that we need to address the challenges ahead. Another shock is coming, in fact, it’s already here, are we ready to meet it? 

“What’s Next In…” Podcast Launch

“What’s Next In…” is a podcast about the rapidly changing world and how to stay ahead of it.

Join Phil and his co-host Liora Raitblat every Monday as they talk about trends and topics that are rapidly changing our world. You can listen to the first episode below.

EPISODE 1: What’s Next In Introductions
We do this one thing almost daily, “Hello, my name is X and I do Y”. We introduce ourselves to new colleagues, clients, strangers, acquaintances, future friends, and maybe lovers. After all, you can’t redo a first impression. Why do we so often default to our job titles when there are so many other ways to introduce ourselves? 

In this episode, the first-ever, Phil and Liora thought they were recording a 2-minute teaser trailer to get listeners hooked. But instead, they ended up diving deep into introductions, what makes a name and the cultural and historical significance in a name, and the importance of identifying ourselves by our values instead of our titles.

Join them as they ask what’s next in the future of introducing ourselves?  

TEDx Toronto Talk Announced

Phil was just announced as a speaker at TEDxToronto on Feburary 4th.

The other speakers for TEDxToronto’s Winter digital event series are as follows:

Paul Sun-Hyung Lee, Actor & Comedian (February 4th)

  •  Paul Sun-Hyung Lee is a two-time Canadian Screen Award winner for Best Actor in a Comedy Series for his performance as family patriarch Appa in Kim’s Convenience. A self-professed nerd, he is a collector of movies, all things Star Wars, and an avid replica prop builder and cosplayer. Most recently, Paul has appeared in The Mandalorian and as a voice actor for Abby Hatcher, Fuzzly Catcher.

Lydia-Joi Marshall, Researcher & Health Equity Champion (February 4th) 

  • Lydia-Joi Marshall is a passionate health care professional and researcher endeavouring to foster healthy business relationships and continuously serve as a bridge between the scientific community and the general public. Lydia-Joi is the Vice President of the Black Health Alliance and a Research Associate for #TheActionProject at University Health Network.

Chenny Xia, Entrepreneur & Experience Designer (February 4th)

  • Chenny Xia is an experience designer, technologist, and serial entrepreneur focused on creating a more equitable healthcare system through decolonization. As the co-founder of Gotcare, she’s transforming how home health is delivered across Canada by leveraging emerging technologies and design thinking methods to reduce the cost of care delivery.

Woven together by speakers across all four digital experiences, the timely theme of Uncharted explores how we can navigate unfamiliar territory, find sources of hope, and chart a better path for our community, together.

Ticket sales are now open to the public and available at this link. Season passes, which include access to the two digital events, are available for $25, while individual event tickets are priced at $15. A limited number of student and subsidized tickets are available for those who qualify, supported by a Pay TEDx Forward program that the organization launched in 2020. Proceeds from ticket sales go towards helping fund TEDxToronto’s 100% volunteer-run work in the GTHA community.

Forbes x Polestar Feature, “How Phil De Luna Is Shaping the Future of Clean Energy”

Phil was recently featured by Forbes and Polestar on a new video series to showcase the new electric vehicle. Phil was a member of the Polestar Forbes Under 30 Advisory Board where worked alongside other changemakers and titans of the automotive industry to answer the question – how do we promote inclusive electric vehicle adoption to decarbonize our transportation sector?

You can watch the video here

Polestar is a Swedish automotive brand owned by Volvo Cars. The company develops electric performance cars and offers performance hardware upgrades and engine software optimisations for Volvo models through their Polestar Engineered division.

OECD Report, “Collaborative Platforms for Innovation in Advanced Materials”

A new OECD Report, “Collaborative Platforms for Innovation in Advanced Materials” that Phil collaborated to was just released. This report is a culmination of 1.5 years of work including international workshops and drafting. Phil contributed a case study on his program, the Materials for Clean Fuels Challenge Program to the work.

You can find the report here.

Abstract:

Advanced materials hold significant potential to create better products and production processes. Yet realising their promise remains challenging: historically it has taken 15 to 20 years from discovery to deployment of new materials in products. Consequently, governments have been creating shared digital and physical infrastructures – “collaborative platforms” – to pool and manage global data, drive the development of nascent industries, and create hubs of interdisciplinary research, development and training. Based on evidence from 12 case studies, this report characterises governance mechanisms of collaborative platforms for advanced materials such as terms of funding, access, and IP policy and explores how they can create different kinds of value. Technology convergence, the engagement of society and digitalisation are identified as key trends. The study describes conditions under which collaborative platforms can align and power value chains, foster standards, catalyse innovation ecosystems and build education, skills and social capital.

Forbes Ignite Inner Wealth Podcast

Forbes Ignite’s CEO, Nicole Cacal, chats with Phil De Luna – Director of the Materials for Clean Fuels Challenge Program at National Research Council Canada. Nicole and Phil discuss their shared experience as Filipino entrepreneurs in North America, the importance of purpose over profit, and how an empathetic approach might be the key to combatting climate change.Our host, Nicole Cacal, chats with Phil De Luna – Director of the Materials for Clean Fuels Challenge Program at National Research Council Canada. Nicole and Phil discuss their shared experience as Filipino entrepreneurs in North America, the importance of purpose over profit, and how an empathetic approach might be the key to combatting climate change.

You can listen to the podcast below:

Abhinav Singhal Inner Wealth

Our host, Nicole Cacal, chats with Abhinav Singhal — Chief Strategy Officer, APAC of Thyssenkrupp. They discuss Abhinav’s commitment to lifelong learning, the value of self-reflection, and how his passion for helping others navigate the future of work has led him to exciting new opportunities on his own career path.—Abhinav Singhal on LinkedInNicole Cacal on LinkedInForbes Ignite on LinkedInForbes Ignite WebsiteForbes Ignite on Instagram
  1. Abhinav Singhal
  2. Justin Nanfelt
  3. Dr. Linda Charmaraman
  4. Jamie Mustard
  5. Phil De Luna