How to Invest to Save the Planet // Webinar // Th. 2/25 @ 12:00pm ET/5:00pm GMT

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Join YBG’s London chapter, the Yale International Alliance, and the Yale Club of London for an interactive webinar to learn how you use your money as powerful tool to drive change when it comes to protecting the planet, empowering communities and creating fairer societies.

Hear how a growing number of people are investing their money in extraordinary and pioneering organisations to create a lasting and positive impact that can drive environmental and social transformation.

Speakers from the Low Carbon Hub and Westmill Solar Cooperative will discuss how tapping into a growing and increasingly mainstream community of individual ethical investors via platforms such as Ethex and Energise Africa is not only providing a win for organisations in enabling them to access vital longer-term patient capital and a win for investors who can directly use their money to deliver a social and environmental impact whilst targeting a competitive financial return.

Olga Babakina ’05 MEM (Moderator)

Olga is a professional business project evaluator with experience of working internationally across clean-tech, infrastructure and energy deals requiring financial, commercial skills and in-depth knowledge of technology and environmental risks. In India, Olga managed the due-diligence process for over 50 low-carbon projects ranging from biomass gasification to small hydro projects from start to finish. This involved identifying the projects with local developers, reviewing business plans and financials with my colleagues at ICICI bank, negotiating Emission Reduction Purchase Agreements with the potential buyers of carbon credits and sending the successful projects to UNFCCC board for registration. She also provided technical and financial consulting services in support of investment decisions in the UK, Kazakhstan, USA, Jordan, Oman, UAE, Kuwait and China.

Olga has a broad experience of working with SMEs, charities and social enterprises on projects that generate environmental and social benefits and deliver financial returns in deprived areas in the UK. She was also involved in economic empowerment projects focusing on development of micro-financing programmes for the rural poor in India to help families and communities to maintain a sustainable livelihood. In Russia, Olga was involved in development of Joint Implementation projects aimed at reduction of GHG emissions from manufacturing, oil and gas, and chemical sectors.

Olga has been awarded an MBA from Cambridge University, Master’s Degrees from Yale School of the Environment and from Moscow State University in Environmental Geology. Olga supports London Wildlife Trust and Brilliant Butterflies network.

Tom Parkinson, Director at Westmill Solar Co-operative

Tom works as a consultant in the renewable energy sector, working for a variety of businesses including Co-operative Energy, which buys some of the output from Westmill Wind Farm. He is also a founder director of Energy Local, a social enterprise set up in 2013 to help communities match their demand directly to the supply of locally-generated renewable electricity. Energy Local’s first trial took place in the three villages closest to the Westmill Solar site in 2015/6. He is a member of a number of other renewable energy societies and a trustee of Eyes for East Africa, which supports the work of the Kwale District Eye Centre in Kenya.

Tom qualified as a solicitor and has worked as an in-house lawyer at companies including Video Arts (the training company set up by John Cleese) and QXL ricardo (the online auction company and European competitor to eBay). He has an MBA from IESE in Barcelona and completed a renewable energy module at the Open University in 2010.

Barbara Hammond, CEO, Low Carbon Hub

Barbara is CEO of the Low Carbon Hub, a Executive Director on the Board and sits on the Investment Committee.

From 2000 until 2010, Dr Barbara Hammond was in Government, heading up the UK’s renewable energy programme. During this time she set up the first capital grants programmes to support renewable energy technologies. Prior to this she worked with Sir David King to help influence international partners on climate change in the run up to the UK presidency of the G8 and the EU in 2005.

Since 2008 Barbara has been involved in community energy groups in her own neighbourhood, helping to bring projects like Osney Lock Hydro and Matthew Arnold School’s solar PV project to fruition. In 2010, Oxford City Council asked Barbara to explore the potential for growing community-led energy through social enterprise. This became the Low Carbon Hub which was launched in December 2011.

She was awarded an MBE in the 2015 New Year’s Honours List for services to community energy development, particularly in Oxfordshire.

Lisa Ashford, CEO & Director at Ethex and Energise Africa

Lisa is a leader in the crowdfunding and impact investment space and has over 20 years experience in energy and environmental markets. Lisa is highly motivated, a strategic thinker and has a strong commercial and business development background.

Lisa is currently Director and CEO at Ethex, which is a leading ethical & positive investment platform in the UK and Founder/Director of Lendahand Ethex: Energise Africa, a platform raising investment for solar businesses expanding their PAYGO schemes in Sub Saharan Africa. Combined they have raised over £100m from retail investors to do good.

She accompanied the PM on the recent trade mission to Africa representing best in class UK businesses in Fintech and renewables. Lisa is also active on the working groups initiated by the government to build a culture of social impact investing in the UK. She is a regular media commentator on ethical investment.

Before Ethex, Lisa worked as a freelance consultant for a number of start-ups and international sustainable businesses. Prior to this, Lisa held senior commercial roles at EcoSecurities, one of the largest providers of carbon finance in the world, from its AIM listing through to its acquisition by J.P. Morgan in early 2010.

Before EcoSecurities, Lisa worked for a number of years in Financial Services primarily setting up and developing exchange and clearing facilities for commodities, specifically UK/European power and gas in liberalised energy markets. She was instrumental in the design, build and operation of the world’s first 24×7 trading platform, UK Power Exchange.

Lisa was recently awarded the PWC scholarship as outstanding female candidate to study for an executive level Diploma in Financial Strategy at the Said Business School, Oxford University. Lisa also holds an MSc in Environmental technology from Imperial College.