CEC - The Future of Natural Gas and Its Role in the Energy Transition Event Logo

CEC - The Future of Natural Gas and Its Role in the Energy Transition

by Center for Sustainable Global Enterprise (CSGE)

Professional Speaker Sustainability Energy

Fri, Nov 12, 2021

1 PM – 2 PM EST (GMT-5)

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As the energy transition conversation increases exponentially, practice has shown that the evolution of energy resources, generation and consumption methods have yet to prove to be reliable and resilient. With this in mind, natural gas has the potential to be an efficient and cleaner alternative that can play a vital role in developing energy accessibility for economies, as well as to support countries' decarbonization efforts.

Cornell Energy Connection (CEC), Cornell’s premier energy event, will be held virtually throughout November and December. Sessions will all consist of panels of professionals sharing perspectives on key issues impacting the sector, including energy transition, decarbonization, and the impact government and investors have on the future of clean power supply. For more information on speakers, go to cec2021.splashthat.com.


Lance Crist (BA ’87)'s profile photo

Lance Crist (BA '87)

Global Head of Infrastructure Equity

International Finance Corporation (IFC)


Mr. Crist has 30+ years of experience in financial services, across a range of project finance, private equity and mezzanine investing, including 18 years in the global energy business. He is the Global Head of Equity for Infrastructure at the International Finance Corporation, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group. In this role, he leads IFC’s strategy and execution for equity and mezzanine investing across the energy, transport, water, telecoms and mining sectors. Lance chairs IFC’s investment committee responsible for execution and asset management for its $3 billion equity and mezzanine business in these sectors, which includes over 100 investees in 30+ countries, ranging from early stage start-ups to private equity-backed platforms and listed companies. In addition to working directly with management teams and shareholder partners, he has oversight for selection of IFC’s nominee directors on investee boards, and negotiation of investment exits.Lance holds a Masters in Business Administration from The Wharton School, and a Bachelor of Arts in Government from Cornell University. He also completed the Executive Development Program at Harvard Business School and board governance programs at IMD and the UK Institute of Directors.

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Areli Covarrubias

Commercial Director for Natural Gas

Sempra Infraestructura


Areli Covarrubias is Commercial Director for Natural Gas at Sempra Infraestructura. She has more than 14 years of experience in the Energy Sector and is responsible for the administration and commercial operation of Sempra Infraestructura’s natural gas assets, as well as for the associated optimization efforts. Before this appointment, she had been the Business and Commercial Manager and also has been part of the Regulatory and External Affairs team at Sempra Infraestructura. In her previous experience, before entering Sempra Infraestructura, she was a legislative advisor and account executive in energy matters at Guerra Castellanos & Asociados. Areli has a degree in International Relations from the ITAM in Mexico City and is currently President of the Transport Committee at the Mexican Natural Gas Association.

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Ricardo Hernandez Astigarraga

Business Development Manager

Gunvor Group Ltd


Alvaro Pinto Fajer (MBA ‘22)'s profile photo

Alvaro Pinto Fajer (MBA ‘22)

Environmental and Social Regulatory Supervisor

Sempra Infraestructura


Alvaro Pinto is a professional in the energy industry, with almost 7 years of experience in strategic sectors such as Oil and Gas, Biofuels and Power Generation, as well as ESG activities within the industry. Alvaro started his professional career in Asepro Ecologia, a Mexican Biofuel startup company, consulting and aiding in the development of small-scale biodiesel projects in Mexico. In 2017, Alvaro joined Sempra Infraestructura, one of Mexico’s largest energy infrastructure companies; the first energy to go public in Mexico’s Stock Exchange (BMV), as an Environmental and Social Regulatory Supervisor, title that he currently holds. In Sempra Infraestructura, Alvaro supervises the attainment of all environmental, social and marine permitting and necessary authorizations for the correct development of large-scale projects such as LNG Terminals, Fuel Storage Terminals, pipelines, among others.

Alvaro graduated from Gustavus Adolphus College in Minnesota as an Environmental Studies major and Political Science minor. He is also an MBA Candidate at Cornell University, Class of 2022.

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