Session 11: Planning, Design, and Climate Actions for Renewable Energy Transitions: Lessons from the Pacific Rim

Meeting the challenges of the climate crisis requires large-scale deployment of renewable energy sources; however, challenges emerge in terms of land use conflicts with local communities, biodiversity and critical habitats. This seminar motivates the importance of a rapid transition to net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, but also discusses some of the land use challenges along the way. Using case studies across the Asia-Pacific region, we present potential solutions to mitigate land-use conflicts, including improving renewable energy siting requirements and reassessing the compatibility of uses.

Date & Time

February 7 at 5 pm (PST)
February 8 at 9 am (HK time)


Professor Makena Coffman, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa & Professor Yekang Ko, University of Oregon


Professor Makena Coffman, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa


  • Professor Brendan Barrett, Osaka University
  • Professor Yekang Ko, University of Oregon
  • Professor Hsiao-Wen Wang, National Cheng Kung University
  • Professor Kirk Dimond, University of Arizona


Find the recording here.

Prof Makena Coffman

Prof Makena Coffman is the Director for the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa Institute for Sustainability and Resilience. She is a Professor of Urban and Regional Planning and teaches a graduate seminar in climate change across the Asia/Pacific Region. Her research interest is climate change policy, including greenhouse gas mitigation, alternative transportation strategies, and climate adaptation. She currently serves on the City and County of Honolulu Climate Change Commission.

Prof Brendan F.D. Barrett

Talk title: Energy transition and subnational climate actions

Prof Brendan F.D. Barrett (FRSA) is Specially Appointed Professor in the Center for the Study of Co* Design, Osaka University, Japan. He has worked in academia and environmental consultancy in the UK, Japan and Australia and as an official with UNEP and the United Nations University. Since 2015, he has been undertaking research on ethical cities, sociotechnical transitions and the climate crisis.

Prof Yekang Ko

Talk title: Conflicts of Greens and renewable energy collocation in the Pacific Rim

Prof Yekang Ko is the Program Director of the APRU Sustainable Cities and Landscapes Hub and an Associate Professor of Landscape Architecture and the Undergraduate Studies (BLA) Director at the University of Oregon. Her research and teaching focus on sustainable energy landscapes, green infrastructure performance, and planning and design for climate change mitigation and adaptation. She obtained her PhD in Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning at the University of California, Berkeley.

Prof Hsiao-Wen Wang

Talk title: Participatory spatial planning for solar energy development from Taiwan

Prof Hsiao-Wen Wang is a Professor with the Department of Hydraulic and Ocean Engineering and Vice President for International Affairs at National Cheng Kung University. Her fields of expertise include river mechanics and restoration, ecohydraulics, water environment planning and assessment, and fluvial geomorphology. Her recent research interests also cover participatory environmental planning and innovative learning and teaching design. She obtained her PhD in Civil Engineering at National Taiwan University.

Prof Kirk Dimond

Talk title: Urban Photovoltaics site design principles and case studies

Prof Kirk Dimond, LEED AP is an Assistant Professor of Landscape Architecture at the University of Arizona. His research involves landscape performance by evaluating social and ecological synergies and tradeoffs in design decisions relating to ecology, energy, and water. He is currently working on integrating solar PV into the urban landscape through exploration of land use colocation.