The two-day conference will bring together stakeholders from across the government, renewable energy industry, and conservation community to discuss the administration’s efforts to rapidly and responsibly stand-up renewable energy projects on our nation’s public lands.
Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar, Secretary of Energy Steven Chu and Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack will open the workshop with a roundtable discussion about the Administration’s work to build a clean energy economy. Immediately following the roundtable, the Secretaries will hold a press conference to discuss how President Obama’s tax cuts are encouraging business investment and job creation in wind, solar and other renewable energy technologies.Roundtable Discussion with Secretaries Salazar, Chu, Vilsack
- Ken Salazar, Secretary of the Interior
- Steven Chu, Secretary of Energy
- Tom Vilsack, Secretary of Agriculture
10:15 a.m. Press Conference
Department of the Interior
1849 C St., NW
Washington, D.C. 20240
All credentialed media are invited to cover the event. Please RSVP to email@example.com
In cooperation with Members of the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate Renewable Energy & Energy Efficiency Caucuses – and in partnership with the House Sustainable Energy & Environment Coalition, House High Performance Building Caucus, House Algae Energy Caucus, House Hydropower Caucus, House Green Jobs Caucus, House Hydrogen & Fuel Cell Caucus, and House Green Schools Caucus – the Sustainable Energy Coalition is hosting the day-long 13th annual Congressional Renewable Energy & Energy Efficiency Expo + Forum.
This year’s Expo will bring together 50+ businesses, sustainable energy industry trade associations, government agencies, and energy policy research organizations (see list-to-date below) to showcase the status and near-term potential of the cross-section of renewable energy (biofuels/biomass, geothermal, solar, water, wind), fuel cells, hydrogen, energy storage, smart-grid, and energy efficiency technologies (e.g., lighting, appliances, vehicles, buildings, CHP).
(11:00 am – 12:00 pm; Cannon Caucus Room)
Names to Be Announced
EXECUTIVE BRANCH SPEAKERS
(12:00 pm – 1:00 pm; Cannon Caucus Room)
- Philip D. Moeller, Commissioner, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
- Jane Oates, Assistant Secretary for the Employment & Training Administration, U.S. Department of Labor
- Matt Rogers, Senior Advisor to the Secretary for Recovery Act Implementation, U.S. Department of Energy
- Heather Zichal, Deputy Assistant to the President for Energy & Climate Change
(9:40 am – 10:55 am; House Veterans Affairs Committee Room – 340 Cannon)
- John Cooper – Skyline Solar
- Dan Delurey – Demand Response & Smart Grid Coalition
- Todd Foley – American Council for Renewable Energy
- Norma McDonald, American Biogas Council
- Debbie Montagna – Ocean Power Technologies, Inc.
- Jackie Prince Roberts, Director – Sustainable Technologies, Environmental Defense Fund
- Jack Rogers, Biofuels Marketing Manager, Americas – Novozymes
- Bob Rose – Breakthrough Technologies Institute
- Gia Schneider, CEO – Natel Energy
- Bill Shank, Energy Transitions
- Scott Sklar, President – The Stella Group, Ltd.
- Keith Takasawa, Chief Product Development Director – THINK
- Melissa VanOrnum, Marketing Manager – GHD, Inc.
- Chris Voell, Program Manager-AgSTAR, Climate Change Division, USEPA
- Maria Vargas, ENERGY STAR, U.S. EPA
- Don Moore, CEO – Harmonics Limited, Inc.
AFTERNOON PANEL DISCUSSIONS:
(1:10 pm – 4:30 pm; House Veterans Affairs Committee Room – 340 Cannon)Panel on Solar Technologies
- Rhone Resch, Ex. Dir. – Solar Energy Industries Association
- Tony Clifford, CEO – Standard Solar
- Jeff Wolfe, CEO – GroSolar
- Eric Huffman, Business Development Mgr. – Eastern Region, SunOptics
- Karl Gawell, Ex. Dir. – Geothermal Energy Association
- Linda Church Ciocci, Ex. Dir. – National Hydropower Association
- Lisa Jacobson, Ex. Dir. – Business Council for Sustainable Energy
- Karen Florini, Environmental Defense Fund
- Ruth Cox, Ex. Dir. – US Fuel Cell Council
- Robert P. Thornton, Ex. Dir. – International District Energy Association
- Justin Rathke, Dir. – Policy & Dis. Develop., Capstone Turbine Corp.
- Katherine Hamilton, President – GridWise Alliance
- Ryan Colker, Dir.- Consultative Council, National Inst. of Bldg Sciences
- Chelsea Jenkins, Ex. Dir. – Virginia Clean Cities
- 3M – Renewable Energy Division
- Abengoa Solar
- American Council on Renewable Energy
- AFC First
- American Biogas Council
- Beacon Power
- Biomass Coordinating Council
- Business Council for Sustainable Energy
- California Fuel Cell Partnership
- Capstone Turbine Corporation
- Demand Response & Smart Grid Coalition
- Dow Kokam
- Dow Solar Solutions
- Ecobuild America
- Energy Transitions
- Enervation Lighting
- Environmental & Energy Study Institute
- Environmental Defense Fund
- Frostburg State University – Renewable Energy Center
- Fuel Cells 2000
- Geothermal Energy Association
- GHD, Inc.
- GridWise Alliance
- Growth Energy
- Harmonics Limited
- Ice Energy
- International District Energy Association
- Microcell Corporation
- Natel Energy
- National Hydrogen Association
- National Hydropower Association
- National Institute of Building Sciences
- National Renewable Energy Laboratory
- NewTek Energy Solutions
- Novozymes North America, Inc.
- Ocean Power Technologies, Inc.
- Renewable Fuels Association
- SAGE Electrochromics, Inc.
- Skyline Solar
- Solar Energy Industries Association
- Standard Solar
- SunOptics Prismatic Skylights
- Sunpeak USA Inc.
- The Stella Group, Ltd.
- THINK North America
- U.S. Clean Heat & Power Association
- U.S. Department of Energy-Efficiency & Renewables
- U.S. Department of Energy-Clean Cities
- U.S. EPA-AGSTAR
- U.S. EPA-Center for Program Analysis
- U.S. EPA-ENERGY STAR Program
- U.S. Fuel Cell Council
- U.S. Green Energy Corporation
- Water Management, Inc.
From the Wonk Room.
Global warming has “virtually wiped out” the most complex Caribbean coral reefs, “compromising their role as a nursery for fish stocks and a buffer against tropical storms,” a new study finds.
“Badly outnumbered and months behind in the debate on energy and climate change, House Republicans plan to introduce an energy bill” drafted by global warming denier Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN) today, “setting a goal of building 100 reactors over the next 20 years.”
“China is planning a vast increase in its use of wind and solar power over the next decade and believes” it can achieve 20 percent renewable power by 2020,” even as the U.S. renewable standard in clean energy legislation has been whittled down to less than 15 percent by 2020.
From the Wonk Room.
“New York could create as many as 50,000 jobs by converting 45 percent of its electricity needs to renewable energy sources by 2015,” Governor David Paterson said on Monday.
“Environmental groups are urging House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to work with them on increasing the renewable electricity mandate in her chamber’s climate and energy bill to reach at least 20 percent by 2020 and to include more efficiency requirements, as well.”
Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-ND) expects his drilling amendment to “shrink the no-leasing zone around Florida’s gulf coast to 45 miles from shore” – “less than half the current buffer” – to be approved by the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee today.
The second day of markup on the Waxman/Markey American Clean Energy and Security Act (H.R. 2454) saw a series of amendments from opponents designed to weaken the green economy bill fail in a series of votes. The debate on amendments will continue today and the sessions appear on track to get the bill voted out of committee before this weekend. As the committee discusses the landmark legislation, the Center for American Progress released an analysis of new numbers from the Union of Concerned Scientists showing that households and businesses will save money on their electricity and natural gas bills if Congress passes a Renewable Energy Standard, currently included in ACES.
The renewable energy standard (RES), a key part of the Waxman/Markey bill, requires that 15% of electricity comes from wind, sun, or other renewable sources. In yesterday’s session, bill opponents continued to cite a variety of debunked numbers on increased costs to consumers, but this analysis shows that Americans will save money with the RES included in the bill. States across the country have already seen similar savings as they have implemented RES at the state level. A review by CAP found that half the states have amended their RES after implementation to make it stronger, suggesting its been a successful policy in the states.Back in the committee, Republican opponents read from a script described by Politico as making “counterintuitive” arguments. Their new approach was based on a strategy memo urging opponents to attack the responsible business leaders who support clean energy legislation. The memo accuses businesses of being “guilty of manipulating national climate policy to increase profits on the backs of consumers.” The tone-deaf message of the memo won’t change the fact that businesses see ACES as a chance to create jobs and begin to chart a course out of the current recession. And the script urged:
The bottom line message is this: Democrats are protecting big business; Republicans are protecting consumers.
This ignores the fact that Republicans opposed every effort in 2008 to lower gasoline prices and rein in oil companies.
Amendments that passed yesterday included a provision introduced by Reps. Dingell and Inslee for a Clean Energy Deployment Administration within the Energy Department. This “green bank” would serve to promote clean energy projects in the U.S. through affordable financing for clean energy technologies. A similar amendment from Rep. Eshoo for a Clean Technology grant program also passed. Another major amendment passed was Rep. Betty Sutton’s (D-MI) “cash for clunkers” automotive upgrade program.
From the Wonk Room.
A new report from the Center for American Progress points out that the United States is slipping behind other nations in the development and deployment of clean energy and efficient infrastructure even as China spends $12.6 million every hour greening their economy.
Read the full study here.
China, as part of their two-year stimulus plan, is poised to spend 3% of their GDP a year on public investments in renewable energy, low-carbon vehicles, high-speed rail, an advanced electric grid, efficiency improvements, and other water-treatment and pollution controls. This is about $12.6 million every hour. In the United States, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act invests about half as much as China on comparable priorities. This represents less than half of one percent of our 2008 gross domestic product.
The paper also shows that, when it comes to preparing our country to compete in the new energy economy of the future and create millions of new jobs, the United States lags behind most of our competitors in the rest of the world in a four key ways.
- We have no national energy portfolio standard that encourages clean, renewable power and shifts away from dirty and dangerous energy.
- We have an outdated electrical grid unsuited for the task of carrying energy from regions rich in wind, solar, and geothermal potential to the people who need the energy.
- We don’t make dirty energy companies pay for the pollution they pump into the air; in fact, we give them billions every year in tax breaks.
- And we don’t invest enough in research, development, and deployment to inspire our entrepreneurs and leverage their discoveries by helping bring their bold new technologies to market.
As venture capitalist John Doerr recently pointed out in his testimony before the Senate Committee on the Environment and Public Works, “What is at stake is whether America will be the worldwide winner in the next great global industry, green technologies.”
The ethanol mandate taught us that energy subsidies for commercial energy projects can lead to unintended consequences and ultimately be counterproductive. Yet Washington’s attempts to address America’s energy questions continue to rely heavily on preferences, mandates, and subsidies for energy commercialization. This is causing energy experts from across the political spectrum to begin questioning the role of subsidies in energy policy. Is this an area where liberals and conservatives might agree?
Join us for a panel with four politically diverse energy experts who will discuss these questions and others as they investigate where agreement exists on the role of energy subsidies, mandates, and preferences in commercializing energy in the United States.Speakers
- Peter Bradford, Vermont Law School, former NRC Commissioner and Union of Concerned Scientists Board Member
- Marlo Lewis, Senior Fellow, Competitive Enterprise Institute
- Doug Koplow, Founder, Earth Track
- Ben Lieberman, Senior Policy Analyst, Energy and Environment, The Heritage Foundation
- Jack Spencer, Research Fellow in Nuclear Energy Policy, The Heritage Foundation
- Henry Sokolski, Executive Director, Nonproliferation Policy Education Center (NPEC)
214 Massachusetts Ave NE
From the Wonk Room.
President-elect Barack Obama’s reported selection of Dr. Steven Chu as Secretary of Energy is a bold stroke to set the nation on the path to a clean energy economy. Chu, a Nobel Prize-winning physicist, is the sixth director of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, a Department of Energy-funded basic science research institution managed by the University of California. After moving to Berkeley Lab from Stanford University in 2004, Chu “has emerged internationally to champion science as society’s best defense against climate catastrophe.” As director, Chu has steered the direction of Berkeley Lab to addressing the climate crisis, pushing for breakthrough research in energy efficiency, solar energy, and biofuels technology.
At Berkeley Lab, Chu has won broad praise as an effective and inspirational leader. “When he was first here, he started giving talks about energy and production of energy,” Bob Jacobsen, a senior scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley Lab, told the San Francisco Chronicle in 2007. “He didn’t just present a problem. He told us what we could do. It was an energizing thing to see. He’s not a manager, he’s a leader.” In an interview with the Wonk Room, David Roland-Holst, an economist at the Center for Energy, Resources and Economic Sustainability at UC Berkeley, described Chu as a “very distinguished researcher” and “an extremely effective manager of cutting edge technology initiatives.” Roland-Holst praised Chu’s work at Lawrence Berkeley, saying “he has succeeded in reconfiguring it for a new generation of sustainable technology R&D, combining world class mainstream science with the latest initiatives in renewable energy and climate adaptation.”Under Chu’s leadership, Berkeley Lab and other research institutions have founded the Energy Biosciences Institute with $500 million, ten-year grant from energy giant BP, and the Joint BioEnergy Institute with a $125 million grant from the Department of Energy. The BP deal has raised questions and protests about private corporations benefiting from public research. At the dedication of JBEI last Wednesday, Chu “recalled how the nation’s top scientists had rallied in the past to meet critical national needs, citing the development of radar and the atomic bomb during World War II”:
The reality of past threats was apparent to everyone whereas the threat of global climate change is not so immediately apparent. Nonetheless, this threat has just got to be solved. We can’t fail. The fact that we have so many brilliant people working on the problem gives me great hope.
Chu’s leadership extends beyond this nation’s boundaries. As one of the 30 members of the Copenhagen Climate Council, Chu is part of an effort to spur the international community to have the “urgency to establish a global treaty by 2012 which is fit for the purpose of limiting global warming to 2ºC,” whose elements “must be agreed” at the Copenhagen summit in December, 2009.
Last year, Dr. Chu co-chaired a report on “the scientific consensus framework for directing global energy development” for the United Nations’ InterAcademy Council. Lighting the Way describes how developing nations can “‘leapfrog’ past the wasteful energy trajectory followed by today’s industrialized nations” by emphasizing energy efficiency and renewable energy.
It’s hard to decide if the selection of Dr. Chu is more remarkable for who he is – a Nobel laureate physicist and experienced public-sector administrator – or for who is not. Unlike previous secretaries of energy, he is neither a politician, oil man, military officer, lawyer, nor utility executive. His corporate ties are not to major industrial polluters but to advanced technology corporations like AT&T (where he began his Nobel-winning research) and Silicon Valley innovator Nvidia (where he sits on the board of directors). Chu is a man for the moment, and will be a singular addition to Obama’s Cabinet.
Energy Secretary Contender Dr. Steven Chu: Transform the Energy Landscape to Save 'A Beautiful Planet'
From the Wonk Room.
The Washington Post’s Al Kamen reports that there’s “buzz” that the Obama transition is “looking hard at some scientific types” to lead the Energy Department. Dr. Steven Chu, the Nobel laureate director of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, is reportedly a dark horse candidate.
In a presentation at this summer’s National Clean Energy Summit convened by the University of Nevada Las Vegas, Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV), and the Center for American Progress Action Fund, Dr. Chu described why he has moved from his background in experimental quantum physics to tackling global warming:
Consider this. There’s about a 50 percent chance, the climate experts tell us, that in this century we will go up in temperature by three degrees Centigrade. Now, three degrees Centigrade doesn’t seem a lot to you, that’s 11° F. Chicago changes by 30° F in half a day. But 5° C means that … it’s the difference between where we are today and where we were in the last ice age. What did that mean? Canada, the United States down to Ohio and Pennsylvania, was covered in ice year round.
Five degrees Centigrade.
So think about what 5° C will mean going the other way. A very different world. So if you’d want that for your kids and grandkids, we can continue what we’re doing. Climate change of that scale will cause enormous resource wars, over water, arable land, and massive population displacements. We’re not talking about ten thousand people. We’re not talking about ten million people, we’re talking about hundreds of millions to billions of people being flooded out, permanently.
As Dr. Chu explains in the above video, the optimal way to reduce greenhouse emissions is to waste less energy, by investing in energy efficiency. He demolished the myth that we can’t reduce our use of energy without reducing our wealth by offering numerous counterexamples, or, in his scientist’s jargon, “existence proofs.” Applause broke out when he described how companies, after claiming efficiency gains and lowered costs were impossible, “miraculously” achieved them once they “had to assign the jobs from the lobbyists to the engineers.”
Chu continued by discussing what he has done to develop “new technologies to transform the landscape.” He discussed the Helios Project, the research initiative Berkeley Lab launched for breakthrough renewable energy and efficiency technology. In addition to research into energy conservation, Berkeley Lab researchers are pursuing nanotech photovoltaics, microbial and cellulosic biofuels, and chemical photosynthesis.
Dr. Chu concluded his address with a reminder why this challenge is so important:
I will leave you with this final image. This is – I was an undergraduate when this picture was taken by Apollo 8 – and it shows the moon and the Earth’s rise. A beautiful planet, a desolate moon. And focus on the fact that there’s nowhere else to go.
From the Wonk Room.
A major new study of the success of California’s green economy by economist David Roland-Holst finds that “California’s energy-efficiency policies created nearly 1.5 million jobs from 1977 to 2007, while eliminating fewer than 25,000.” Today, California’s per-capita electricity demand is 40 percent below the national average:
Instead of household income being lost to the capital intensive energy sector, Californians have enjoyed the benefits of their wages being plowed into job creating sectors, such that “induced job growth has contributed approximately $45 billion to the California economy since 1972.”Energy Efficiency, Innovation, and Job Creation in California, by David Roland-Holst, an economist at the Center for Energy, Resources and Economic Sustainability at the University of California, Berkeley, is the first study of how the savings from California’s energy efficiency standards affected its economy through “expenditure shifting” away from the energy sector. The author explains:
When consumers shift one dollar of demand from electricity to groceries, for example, one dollar is removed from a relatively simple, capital intensive supply chain dominated by electric power generation and carbon fuel delivery. When the dollar goes to groceries, it animates much more job intensive expenditure chains including retailers, wholesalers, food processors, transport, and farming. Moreover, a larger proportion of these supply chains (and particularly services that are the dominant part of expenditure) resides within the state, capturing more job creation from Californians for California. Moreover, the state reduced its energy import dependence, while directing a greater percent of its consumption to in-state economic activities.