Session Information

Decarbonization: Discovery, Design and Decisions Shaping the 21st Century Economy

Date: Thursday, March 3

Time: 2:00pm - 3:30pm

Format: Panel Discussion

More than 150 governments have submitted plans to reduce carbon emissions by 2030. With full decarbonization of our energy and transportation systems the ultimate goal of the 21st century, how are various sectors and industries approaching this critical issue, taking action and ultimately avoiding a short-term view through deep decarbonization strategies that are technically feasible and affordable?

Sponsored by Shell




Topic Speakers

Michael Crothers was appointed the President and Country Chair of Shell Canada on January 1, 2016. Michael holds this role in addition to his role as Vice President, North America Unconventionals.

Michael has more than 30 years of experience leading teams across Shell’s upstream and downstream businesses and his assignments have taken him to countries throughout Asia, Europe, Africa and the Americas.

Michael’s career with Shell began in 1987 as a process engineer. Over the next ten years, he held several Operations leadership roles at the Sarnia refinery and advised the Downstream Strategy team. In 1997, he became the ninth employee to join Shell’s Oil Sands venture as the Commercial and Business Strategy Manager for the Upgrader. Once the project was approved, he took on responsibility for the facility’s operations through the start-up and remained General Manager until mid-2004.

In mid-2004, he was appointed Vice President, Health, Safety and Environment & Social Performance for Downstream, based in London. During this time, he also acted as Business Advisor to the Director of Downstream, through the Downstream One transformation and merger of Royal Dutch and Shell Transport and Trading into one entity.

In 2006, Michael moved to the Chemicals business as General Manager for Global Supply and Logistics spanning over 30 countries. In mid-2008, he returned to Heavy Oil as General Manager for Expansion Operations with responsibility for the Jackpine Mine and the Upgrader Expansion, leading the business through a successful start-up and integration with the base plants by late 2011. Michael then moved to Ireland to lead the Corrib Gas Project and was Managing Director for Shell E&P Ireland and Country Chair before returning to Canada in January 2015 as VP Unconventionals.

Michael graduated with distinction in Chemical Engineering from University of Alberta in 1984. Michael and his wife Cheryl have three children – twin girls and a son. When he’s not on an airplane, Michael enjoys cycling the hills in NW Calgary or do-it-yourself jobs around the house.











Mr. Desjardins-Siciliano joined VIA Rail in 2010 and was appointed President and CEO in May 2014.  Prior to his appointment, he was the Corporation's Chief Corporate & Legal Officer and Corporate Secretary.  A seasoned executive, Mr. Desjardins-Siciliano leads with passion, respect and transparency. He is known for embracing innovation and encouraging creative ideas. A natural communicator, he is in high demand as a keynote speaker at conferences, business events and universities. He prides himself on being an accessible CEO, and values every opportunity to meet and converse with both travellers and employees.

Prior to Via Rail, Mr. Desjardins-Siciliano held several senior positions in legal, regulatory and government relations, business and corporate development, marketing communications and finance. In Montreal and Toronto, he worked for private and publicly held companies, in the information technology, telecommunications, marketing and entertainment industries. Past President of the Canadian Bar Association, Quebec Division, Mr. Desjardins-Siciliano was also Chief of Staff to the federal Minister of Labour and Minister of State for Transport.

Mr. Desjardins-Siciliano holds a law degree (LL.L.) from l’Université de Montréal and he completed Graduate Studies in Law (GSD) at McGill University. He also has a designation from the Institute of Corporate Directors (ICD.D) and is a member of the Barreau du Québec.