Michal Kurtyka

Secretary of State, Ministry of Energy Poland, former Chair of COP24

Kurtyka began his civil service career in 1998 as an official in the Office of the Committee for European Integration, then headed by Jan Kułakowski, in which capacity he worked on Poland's accession to the European Union. From 2006-2008 he was a member and vice-chairman of the supervisory board of Gaz-System, Poland's natural gas infrastructure organisation. From 2016-2018, he served as the Undersecretary of State in the Ministry of Energy, before being promoted to Secretary of State (the second ranking position in the department, behind the Minister). In addition to being Secretary of State for Energy, he is also Poland's representative to the International Energy Agency. In April 2018 it was announced he would chair the 2018 United Nations Climate Change Conference, which was held from 2–14 December 2018. The appointment of Kurtyka, as a relatively anonymous bureaucrat, marked a break from the diplomatic norms of previous climate change conferences, where more senior politicians have traditionally presided. The conference agreed to cuts to pollutants, especially carbon dioxide. At the conclusion of the summit Kurtyka noted: "putting together the Paris agreement work programme is a big responsibility. It has been a long road. We did our best to leave no-one behind.” In July 2018 he was additionally appointed Secretary of State in the Polish Environment Ministry, complementing his Energy Ministry function.

Session II : ENTSO-E seen from outside - achievements & expectations (13/11)
10:30 10:45

Climate change mitigation and the central role of power networks