The French Cleantech scene is booming. It has grown over the past decade into a community attractive to international investment. Beyond the entrepreneurship and private-sector push, the further cultivation of the French Cleantech space will require an increased focus on public policy, building relationships with decision-makers and promoting the needs of the innovators who will be vital to France reaching net zero in time. In the context of this development, Cleantech Group is in the process of launching Cleantech for France.
In 2016, German-French Tristan Beucler watched the BBC Documentary about climate change, hosted by Leonardo DiCaprio. The piece impacted him deeply, stirring up a desire to be climate positive, and to contribute to the race towards net zero. Since then, he’s worked for the German Federal Foreign Office on international energy policy, and in international trade for the European Parliament. Now, he joins the French Cleantech team. His tasks will mainly be themed around industrial, innovation, energy, and climate policy in France.
Having studied at Sciences Po and bringing a background in EU-related public affairs, Tristan is keen on working on climate-positive public policy in a member state context. A native Parisian, Tristan opting to join Cleantech Group’s French venture does seem natural. After all, Tristan is the local expert who compiled a ranked list of Paris WeWorks with USPs, down to the types of beers per venue. What better place to take his climate engagements?
That said, Tristan brings a range of international experiences to the team. Beyond his time in Brussels and Berlin, he has spent some time in the US, and has studied in multiple countries, navigating the domestic idiosyncrasies of everything from educational systems to sports supporter culture. Academically, his focus has been on European Affairs, Political Science, and History, with a specific focus on the Franco-German relationship.
Policy is not the only solution to the climate disaster, but according to Tristan, it is a crucial key to the puzzle. Sobriety, reduced consumption and effectivisation are all other vital elements, but as Tristan puts it: “We still need houses, we still need hospitals.” For example, France must transition to green production of steel and cement in order to reindustrialize and reach carbon neutrality. That will only be possible through strategic policies that empower cleantech innovation.
That is what Tristan intends to do in his new role: making sure that the voices of cleantech innovators and investors are heard by French policymakers, as we all work together to decarbonise the French economy. As he returns to his roots todo this, he shares his reflections on his new learnings. He’s already had to dive into the inner workings of French industry, its structures, hierarchies and its links to policymakers. A lot of his knowledge of French public administration – primarily gained through his academic pursuits – now has to be put into practice.