Gas market integration and decarbonization in Southeastern and Central and Eastern Europe [GGP]
Menelaos (Mel) Ydreos, Executive Director, EnergyVantage Inc.
Menelaos (Mel) Ydreos is the Executive Director of EnergyVantage, a consulting firm specializing in supporting transformational energy strategies and solutions.
Areas of specialization include global energy policy and strategy, market assessment and implementation strategies and organizational cultural, revenue and cost transformation. Clients of EnergyVantage have included the International Gas Union where until recently, he supported the transformation of the Union from a technical association to one of strong global advocacy. He served the Union in the capacity of Public Affairs Director.
In his previous role with Union Gas Ltd--A Spectra Energy Company, Ydreos lead the company's government, municipal and aboriginal affairs activities. Other roles held during his career with Union Gas included Vice President, marketing and customer care, Vice President, operations and Vice President, engineering and gas supply operations. Mr. Ydreos also was Acting President and CEO of the Canadian Gas Association in the summer of 2009. In 2013-2014 he served as the Interim President and CEO of the Ontario Energy Association where he undertook the complete restructuring of that organization.
He has been active in the natural gas industry through his participation with the International Gas Union. Ydreos supported the American Gas Association in securing the IGU's 2015-2018 Presidency, as well as the 2018 World Gas Conference, which was held in Washington DC. During the IGU's USA Presidency and as the Chair, Coordination Committee, he oversaw the work and contribution of 1,000 global industry experts involved in the many IGU committees and task forces. During the 2009-2012 Malaysian Presidency, he served as chair of the Special Task Force on Geopolitics and Natural Gas. In the 2006-2009 Argentinean Presidency, Ydreos served as the vice chair of the Special Task Force on Research and Development and led the IGU's Best Practices Initiative.
Ydreos is the Founding Chair of Energy Technology and Innovation Canada, a past member of the Advisory Board of the University of Waterloo's Sustainability Institute, a member of Pollution Probe's Board of Directors and a member of the Advisory Committee of the Mowat Centre's Energy Fellow. Ydreos is past chair of the Standing Committee on Operations for the Canadian Gas Association, and has served on the board of directors of Canadian Standards International Group.
Mariana Liakopoulou, Energy Security Research Fellow, NATO Association of Canada
Mariana Liakopoulou is a research analyst focusing on natural gas security and geopolitics of the Caspian and Central Asian energy markets, as well as of the energy markets of Southeastern and Central and Eastern Europe. She currently serves as a Research Fellow in Energy Security with the NATO Association of Canada (Toronto, Ontario, Canada) and a consultant (Member of the Roster of Experts) of the Energy Community Secretariat (Vienna, Austria). She is a former non-resident Research Fellow in Energy Security and Geopolitics with Caspian Policy Center (Washington D.C.) and a former member of the Strategy and Communication Team of the European Union Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators (Ljubljana, Slovenia). She holds a Bachelor's degree in Communication and Media Studies and a Master's in International Relations and European Studies from the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens. Her Master's thesis looks into the Caspian legal status and the riparian producers' outlook on the European Commission's strategy towards the Fourth/Southern Gas Corridor. Key topics of her published works to date include: the decarbonization of the natural gas sector in Europe; the Southern Gas Corridor; European energy security strategy; regulatory steps towards the liberalization of the European energy markets and the gasification of Western Balkans; aspects of energy cooperation between the EU and the Caspian Sea littoral states; oil and gas pipeline problems and prospects in Russia and the post-soviet republics of the Caspian Sea region; the legal status of the Caspian Sea. She is fluent in English, French, Russian and Greek, and has elementary knowledge of Ukrainian.
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