|The CPUC is hosting this ongoing guest speaker series designed to stimulate thought and discussion of some of the most pressing challenges facing California utility regulators and the private sector industries impacted by state policies. Leading experts from around the world take center stage to offer their expertise and vision in areas such as communications, energy, water, transportation, the environment, green jobs, and more. These events are free and open to the public and take place in the CPUC's Auditorium at 505 Van Ness Ave., San Francisco. The events are also viewable via video webcast in real time and also archived.
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April 18, 2013, 1:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.: The potential benefits of allowing wider access to energy consumption data while protecting specific customer privacy is enormous. Access to such data could enable both the evaluation of existing energy policies and the creation of new and more effective policies in the future. Currently, access to energy consumption data is difficult and sometimes impossible to obtain. Consolidating and publishing that information in aggregate and anonymous form, for example through a centralized repository, could improve state energy policies and create new market opportunities to save energy.
- Opening Remarks: CPUC President Michael R. Peevey
- Presentation on the value of access to data: Dr. Stephanie Pincetl, Adjunct Professor and Director of the Center for Sustainable Communities at the Institute of the Environment and Sustainability, UCLA
- Presentation on building energy databases and the associated costs, privacy, and security issues in building and maintaining this type of database: Jason Adge, Chief Financial Officer, Direct Technology
- Ken Alex, Senior Policy Advisor to Governor Jerry Brown and the Director of the Office of Planning and Research
- Andrew McAllister, Commissioner, California Energy Commission
- Ian Kalin, Presidential Innovation Fellow, U.S. Department of Energy
RSVP (appreciated, not required)
Read the CPUC’s staff paper: Energy Data Center
Read our Media Advisory
Feb. 27, 2013, 1:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m., Cybersecurity, in the CPUC Auditorium: This discussion will address the current state of cybersecurity policies in the U.S., the future of cybersecurity, the relationship between state and federal governments, and how the industry can move forward to avoid any major events. The discussion is free and open to the public.
- Opening Remarks: CPUC Commissioner Mike Florio
- Moderator: Gary Ackerman, Executive Director, Western Power Trading Forum
Kevin Stine, National Institute of Standards and Technology
Tim Roxey, North American Electric Reliability Corporation
Steven Dougherty, IBM
James Sample, Pacific Gas and Electric Company
RSVP (appreciated, not required)
Read the CPUC’s staff paper on cybersecurity
See our posterOct. 26, 2012, 1:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m., Green Economy Partnerships, in the CPUC Auditorium: This discussion will introduce the strategic public/private partnerships focused on developing the green economy in California. Green Economy Partnerships will highlight partnerships between multiple stakeholders such as utilities, government, industry, labor, educators, and investors who are aimed at leveraging limited resources and removing barriers in an effort to drive sustainable
Keynote Speaker and Moderator: Gavin Newsom, Lieutenant Governor, State of California
- Nancy Pfund, Managing Partner, DBL Investors
- Doug Avery, CALCTP Manager, Southern California Edison
- Tim Rainey, Executive Director, California Workforce Investment Board
Presentation of Doug Avery, California Advanced Lighting Controls Training Program: Training Contractors & Electricians on Advanted Lighthing Control Systems
Presentation of Tim Rainey, Executive Director, California Workforce Investment Board: The State Strategic Plan - Overview and Exchange
RSVP (not required, but appreciated)
Read the Media Advisory
View the poster
Read a CPUC staff paper on one aspect of the Green Economy
Aug. 2, 2012, 1:30 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.: The Internet of Things, CPUC Auditorium - This discussion will introduce the Internet of Things - the expanding network of physical objects automatically collecting and transmitting data - and will address questions such as the current, future, and futurist applications of the Internet of Things; the potential for both consumer benefits and consumer perils; and the possible impact of the Internet of Things on California’s communications and energy infrastructure.
Moderator: Rachelle Chong, Vice President, Government Affairs, Comcast
- Jeff Campbell, Senior Director of Technology Policy, Cisco Systems, Inc
- Richard Adler, Principal, People & Technology/Institute for the Future
- Gabriel Broner, Head of Innovation, Ericsson
Moderator and Panelist Bios
RSVP (appreciated, not required)
Read the Media Advisory
View the Flyer
Revitalizing the Clean Energy Economy, March 8, 2012, 1:30-3:30 p.m.: Just a few years ago, the U.S. appeared to have the ability and the will to become a global leader in the transition to a clean energy economy, with California at the forefront. However, various political and economic events may have slowed that momentum. This panel discussion will identify new potential government policies and private sector strategies in California for reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020.
The event is free to the public, but we do request attendees to register via our online system.
See our poster
- Nathaniel Bullard, Director of Content, Bloomberg New Energy Finance
- Efren Carrillo, Supervisor, 5th District, Sonoma County
- Brad Copithorne, Energy and Financial Policy Specialist, EDF
- Nancy E. Pfund, Founder and Managing Partner, DBL Investors
- Moderator: Eric Wesoff, Senior Analyst, GTM Research
Sept. 20, 2011: The Economic Viability of Energy Storage. This panel discussion addressed questions such as what is the optimal cost-benefit methodology for estimating cost effectiveness of electricity storage; what are the tangible and intangible costs and benefits of storage; what are the advantages and disadvantages of distributed versus centralized storage; which applications are most likely to have positive net benefits; and which technologies are closest to commercial viability.
July 11, 2011: Lessons Learned: Solar Leadership from Germany and California. Germany has been very successful at encouraging solar power, particularly with Feed-in Tariffs, but not without stimulating much international analysis on the advantages and disadvantages of their government policies. More recently, Germany’s plan to phase-out all their nuclear power plants by 2022 is raising critical questions about how Germany will obtain adequate energy without nuclear (about 23 percent of total electricity supply currently), while achieving their goal of reducing carbon emissions by 40 percent from 1990 levels in 2020.
Germany currently obtains about 17 percent of their electricity from renewable sources, with goals of 35 percent of total electricity from renewable sources by 2020, and 80 percent by 2050. However, if they are to replace the nuclear power with renewable energy, they may need to deliver as much as 50-60 percent of total electricity from renewable sources by 2020, as they already have very aggressive energy efficiency targets (to increase energy efficiency by 20 percent over 1990 levels).
California and Germany have many similarities (and some significant differences) with respect to energy policies. The following expert panel of solar industry executives discussed the challenges and opportunities for solar development in Germany and California in the context of the broader energy policy issues.
The panelists were :
- Dr. Martin Heming, CEO, Schott Solar
- Dr. Volker Nadenau, CTO, Bosch Solar Energy
- Dr. Marc van Gerven, CEO, Q-Cells North America
Curtis Seymour, just recently returned from working in Germany on solar policy issues for the German government and German solar industry, was the Moderator.
March 24, 2011: Advanced Customer Engagement Platforms: Will Rewards, Competition, and Social Networking Motivate Consumers to Conserve Energy? The panel discussed the ways that software platforms and social media may help customers manage their energy usage, cut their energy bills, and save money. Panelists:
- Jessica Alter, Founder & CEO, Formative Labs | Presentation
- Bruce Ceniceros, Principal Program Planner, Sacramento Municipal Utility District | Presentation
- Sean Harrington, Senior Director, Client Solutions, OPOWER | Presentation
- Tom Scaramellino, Founder & CEO, Efficiency 2.0 | Presentation
- Cameron Brooks, Senior Director, Market Development and Policy Strategy, Tendril | Presentation
- Preston Read, SVP, Government Affairs, RecycleBank | Presentation
The moderator was Brad Kates, President of Opinion Dynamics (Presentation). Media Advisory | Archived Video
October 14, 2010, 1:30 - 3 p.m.: Jacques Besnainou, CEO of Areva North America; and John Hutson, President and CEO of the Fresno Nuclear Energy Group, discussed their plans for a new Clean Energy Park in the San Joaquin Valley, utilizing nuclear power and solar energy. Media Advisory | Archived video
September 22, 2010: Dr. Peter Fox-Penner, a Principal and Chairman Emeritus of Brattle Group. Mr. Fox-Penner, recognized as an international authority on energy and environmental policies and electric regulatory planning and competition issues, discussed his vision for electric utilities as described in his new book, Smart Power: Climate Change, the Smart Grid, and the Future of Electric Utilities. Media Advisory | Presentation | Archived video
August 12, 2010: Peter Darbee, Chairman of the Board, Chief Executive Officer, and President of PG&E Corporation, shared his perspective on Climate Change for Policymakers and Business Leaders and his thoughts on how an energy utility can be successful in the rapidly changing local and global energy markets. Archived video | Media advisory
July 14, 2010: Panel discussion on The Real Cost of Water and the Coming Water Shortage. Discussion topics included: the energy and environmental costs of water production, transport, treatment, distribution, and use; climate change mitigation and adaptation costs associated with water; external costs not currently reflected in water prices; whether agricultural and urban users pay for the real cost of their water; whether California’s multiple water regulatory agencies should propose a joint plan for integrating water regulation; the advantages and disadvantages of CPUC cost effectiveness calculations in evaluating water projects; how the various beneficial uses of water can be appropriately reflected in the price of water.
- Ellen Hanak, Senior Fellow, Public Policy Institute of California
- Michael Hanemann, Chancellor’s Professor, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, University of California, Berkeley
- Fran Spivy-Weber, Vice-Chair of the State Water Resources Control Board
- Bob Wilkinson, Senior Lecturer, Environmental Studies and Bren School, University of California, Santa Barbara
- Video Webcast
- Media Advisory
June 30, 2010: Panel discussion on What Role Can Clean Tech and Smart Grid Start-Ups Play in Solving the Climate Change Crisis? Discussion topics included: how government can enable success of clean tech and Smart Grid start-ups; what utilities and tech companies should do to facilitate commercial success by viable clean tech and Smart Grid start-up companies; whether utilities and tech companies should actively provide venture capital funding to clean tech and Smart Grid start-ups.
- Saul Griffith, inventor; entrepreneur; MacArthur Fellow; and Chief Scientist at Other Lab, a company specializing in developing new ideas, concepts, and prototypes for creating new companies and reinvigorating old ones without using much energy; creator of Makani, a high-altitude wind energy company; Potenco, a human-powered generation company; WattzOn, a company that has created a tool to quantify, track, compare and understand energy use; and Onya Cycles, a company that produces hybrid electric bicycles.
- Cree A. Edwards, Chairman of the Board and a Founder of eMeter Corporation. eMeter provides the essential software platform and applications that enable electric, gas, and water utilities to achieve large-scale Smart Grid deployments. Mr. Edwards co-founded CellNet Data Systems, Inc., an industry leader in providing advanced electricity metering data and communications to utilities. His many roles at Cellnet included Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board.
- See the Flyer
- Video Webcast
April 8, 2010: Ralph Cavanagh, Senior Attorney and Co-Director of the Natural Resources Defense Council's Energy Program. Mr. Cavanagh discussed his vision for energy efficiency, clean energy, and climate change policies, followed by an interactive question and answer session. Video Archive | Media Advisory
March 5, 2010: FERC Commissioner Philip D. Moeller. An interactive discussion with Commissioner Moeller on topics including FERC priorities, federal renewable energy and climate change efforts, FERC actions on grid needs to ensure reliability as more renewables interconnect and independent transmission projects. Video Archive | Media Advisory | Flyer
January 21, 2010: A panel discussion of carbon capture and storage and the role it plays in climate change mitigation. The panel featured Sally M. Benson, Director of the Global Climate and Energy Project at Stanford University; S. Julio Freidmann, Program Leader in Carbon Management at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory; and George Peridas, Scientist at the Climate Center of the Natural Resources Defense Council. Video Archive | Media Advisory | Speaker Bios | Flyer | Presentations: Benson, Peridas
September 24, 2009: The Honorable Claude Turmes, Member of the European Parliament and Vice President, Group of the Greens/European Free Alliance. Mr. Turmes discussed European Policies for Renewable Energy, Energy Efficiency, and Climate Change Policies - Lessons to be Learned, followed with an interactive question-and-answer session with the audience. Mr. Turmes is considered by many as a leader in developing Europe's ambitious energy efficiency programs, the guiding light behind Europe's proactive Renewable Energy Directive, and a strong proponent for climate change mitigation. Video Archive | Presentation
August 27, 2009: An international panel of experts discuss feed-in tariffs. Moderated by Paul Douglas, Manager of Renewable Procurement and Resource Planning for the CPUC. The panel featured Jose Luis Gandia, Chief Operating Officer at Prosolia; David Wortmann, Vice President Policy and Public Affairs at First Solar; Oliver Schaefer, Director at SunPower; and Arno Harris, Chief Executive Officer at Recurrent Energy. Video Archive | Media Advisory
June 10, 2009: California's Budget Challenge and the California Green Economy -- a panel moderated by CPUC Senior Policy Analyst Kristin Ralff-Douglas. Speakers discussed California's budget challenge, clean energy as a smart economic stimulus, how California a model for other states in energy efficiency and how will energy efficiency create jobs in California. The panel featured F. Noel Perry, Founder of Next 10 and Creator of the 2009 California Green Innovation Index; Tracey Grose, Vice President for Research and Strategic Development for Collaborative Economics, Inc.; and David Roland-Holst, Ph.D. Economics, Professor in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics at the University of California, Berkeley and author of three books and 100 articles Video Archive | Presentation | Flyer
May 21, 2009: Mary Nichols, Chairman of the California Air Resources Board, discussed Creating California’s Clean Energy Future: Challenges, Lessons, and Opportunities. Video Archive | Speech Text
November 6, 2008: Vinod Khosla, Co-Founder of Sun Microsystems and Founder of Khosla Ventures, discussed clean technology and venture capital investments. Video Archive | Presentation | Speaker Bio