RSB 1St Phase (2006-2009)

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RSB Founding Steering Board

In May 2007 the Roundtable on Sustainable Biofuels convened the first meeting of its founding Steering Board. The founding Steering Board led the RSB to the release of Version Zero of the Principles and Criteria for Sustainable Biofuels in August 2008 and ensured balanced and transparent stakeholder involvement during development of the draft standard. The founding Steering Board was replaced by a Steering Board elected from the RSB chambers in May 2009.

In developing the founding Steering Board, every effort was made to create a balance of stakeholders from around the world, representing different sectors of society and different actors in the supply chain.

The founding Steering Board members are listed below.
The terms of reference of the founding Steering Board can be downloaded here.

The following documents are available upon request (

  • Minutes of the first Steering Board meeting, held via teleconference on the 14th of May, 2007
  • Minutes of the second Steering Board meeting, held via teleconference on the 20th of September, 2007
  • Minutes of the third Steering Board meeting, held via teleconference on the 15th of February, 2008
  • Minutes of the fourth Steering Board meeting, held via teleconference on the 30th of April, 2008
  • Minutes of the September 24, 2008 short teleconference on Certification and Benchmarking
  • Minutes of the October 20, 2008 teleconferece on governance and structure

RSB Founding Steering Board Members

Mr. Claude Martin, former director of WWF International (Chair) Mr. Marcos Jank, UNICA Sugar Cane Industry Association, Brazil
Mr. Richard Sykes, International Petroleum Industry Environmental Conservation Association Ms. Paloma Berenguer, Shell
Ms. Barbara Bramble, National Wildlife Federation Mr. Achim Steiner, UN Environment Programme
Mr. Ibrahim Rehman, The Energy Resources Institute (TERI), India Mr. Jean-Philippe Denruyter, WWF-International
Mr. Roberto Smeraldi, Amigos da Terra – Amazônia Brasielira Mr. Stephan Herbst, Toyota Motor Europe
Mr. Rolf Hartl, Federation of Swiss Oil Companies Mr. Henri Rieux, Bunge Corporation
Mr. Hisashi Ishitani, Keio University, Japan Mr. Lukas Gutzwiller, Swiss Energy Ministry
Mr. Julio Cesar Pinho, Petrobras Mr. Teddy Püttgen, Energy Center, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (EPFL)
Mr. Heiko Liedeker, former Executive Director of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) Mr. Ibrahim Togola, Mali Folkecenter
Mr. Lucas Assunçao, UNCTAD Mr. Cameron Rennie, BP
Ms. Melinda Kimble, UN Foundation

RSB Working Groups

Much of the initial work of the RSB towards developing the draft Version Zero of the Principles and Criteria was conducted through multi-stakeholder Working Groups under the leadership of the founding Steering Board.  Minutes from these Working Group meetings and other background documents can be found below.

  • 9th Virtual Meeting (30th May 08) – Soil, Air & Water: Minutes
  • 8th Virtual Meeting (7th May 08) – Soil & Air: Minutes / Background paper on soils and air
  • 7th Virtual Meeting (3rd April 08) – Conservation & Technologies: Minutes / Backgrounders on conservation & technologies
  • 6th Virtual Meeting (1st Feb 08) – Conservation: Synthesis
  • 5th Virtual Meeting (4th Dec 07) – Conservation: Minutes
  • 4th Virtual Meeting (19th Oct 07) – Conservation: Minutes
  • 3rd Virtual Meeting (7th Sept 07) - Draft Principles :Minutes
  • 2nd Virtual Meeting (25th July 07) – Draft Principles: Minutes
  • 1st Virtual Meeting: (28th June 07) – Introduction: Minutes

General structure and scope of the Working Group on Environment

All background papers are presented by subject on the Greenhouse Gas Working Group page.

General Overview and scope of the Working Group on Social Issues

  • 5th Virtual Meeting (3rd July 08): Discuss ‘Version Minus Ten’ of the full standard.  Minutes
  • 4th Virtual Meeting (19th May 08): Verification options for the RSB. Minutes
  • 3rd Virtual Meeting (21st-22nd April 08): Discussion of draft criteria on conservation, technology, community consultation, and rural/social development. Minutes
  • 2nd Virtual Meeting (21st Feb 08): First discussion of verification options, small farmer compliance. Minutes
  • Letter to IMP from the Environmental WG
Review of all the proposed edits to the Draft Principles on Environment (1st round Summer-Fall 2007)Synthesis of the discussions (July-August) on Draft Principles


Alwin Kopse – Former Executive Secretary (July 2009 – Dec. 2011)

Alwin Kopse is the former Executive Secretary of the Roundtable on Sustainable Biofuels (July 2009-December 2011). He joined the RSB from Harvard University where he worked as a research fellow at the Kennedy School of Government. His research focused mainly on the governance issues of biodiversity. Previously, Alwin worked both in the private and public sectors on issues related to agriculture, biodiversity, intellectual property, biotechnology, trade and human rights. He is a specialist in international negotiations, especially around the Convention on Biological Diversity, and has extensive experience in negotiating agricultural agreements among industry, government, and NGO actors.

Alwin holds an MLaw of the University of Bern, Switzerland, and an MSc in Public Policy and Management of the School of Oriental and African Studies of the University of London, UK. He speaks German, English and French.

Founding Head of the Secretariat

Charlotte Opal was the Head of the Secretariat at the Roundtable on Sustainable Biofuels at the Energy Center at EPFL from January 2007 until July 2009. She is the co-author of Fair Trade: Market-Driven Ethical Consumption (Sage 2005), the world’s first textbook on Fair Trade. For the past four years Ms. Opal has worked in Business Development and New Product Development at TransFair USA, the Fair Trade certification and marketing agency in the US . She currently serves as Vice-Chair of the Standards Committee at Fairtrade Labelling Organisations (FLO) Int’l, the international multi-stakeholder organization governing Fair Trade certification. Ms. Opal earned an MBA and an M.Phil in Development Studies while a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University, and a BA in Economics at Wake Forest University.