There’s a rapidly-growing city in Texas that boasts one of the most renewable-friendly energy programs in the country — and it’s not Austin. In 2015 Mayor Dale Ross announced that the city of Georgetown, Texas would be powered 100% by renewable electricity. In this episode Lacey and Melissa talk with Chris Foster, the Manager of Resource Planning and Integration, and a trained economist, who is in charge of, among other things, the city’s municipally-owned utility power supply. He is best known for organizing and pioneering the successful transition of Georgetown’s power supply from a single source, 90% fossil fuel-based supplier to a 100% wind and solar plan with multiple providers.
Chris talks about how the city created a strategic plan for the future of its electricity supply that involved coordination with multiple city departments and input from the business community. The result was a focus on renewable energy sources that mitigates regulatory and economic risks while providing stable, long-term electricity costs to its residential and business customers. As one of the fastest growing cities in the United States, there were several factors affecting the plan, including economic concerns, generation profiles of wind and solar power, negotiating with renewable power providers, serving the city’s demand curve, and other issues unique to electricity supply in the ERCOT region. Chris explores these issues and more in this episode.
There’s always something new and exciting to talk about in the renewable power and storage sectors, and in this episode Jeff Clark of The Wind Coalition gives us his insights on several topics, including how the PTC extension will affect the industry and what he sees on the horizon for the power industry in Texas and throughout the country.
Jeff has a 30 year career in the private and public sectors with experience spanning multiple state houses and at the federal level. He is an expert at revitalizing and rebuilding government affairs teams to effectively advocate for his clients. He is currently the executive director of The Wind Coalition, an industry trade organization focused the growth of wind in ERCOT and SPP.
The Wind Coalition: www.windcoalition.org
MIT Technology Review: www.technologyreview.com/c/energy/
Reform: Opportunities and Challenges for U.S. Developers
Tom Foreman, executive director of the Gulf Coast Power Association (GCPA), joins the podcast to discuss the historic reform of
Mexico’s energy industry and the opportunities and implications for U.S. power generation and transmission companies.
After amending the Mexican Constitution to allow for private
investment and ownership in the wholesale electricity and hydrocarbon sectors, ending
80 years of state monopoly, the Mexican government is now crafting and
implementing new regulatory framework.
The reforms set the Mexican economy on a path for growth, as
they will substantially lower electricity and fuel costs for manufacturers. The reforms also
present a significant opportunity for U.S. companies eager to rebuild Mexico’s
energy infrastructure – most immediately, developers of gas and renewable power
Tom discusses economic, political and trade implications; how
his organization is working with Mexican officials to execute reforms; and what
the GCPA is doing to educate its members on this once-in-a-lifetime event.
- GCPA Spring Conference Agenda, April 12-13, 2016
Kate Sherwood is
passionate about the profitable implementation of renewable energy and
sustainability solutions. As senior director and central project development
manager with SolarCity, she leads the team helping commercial and public sector
clients hedge and save on energy expenses.
She is a proven
executive with 20-years’ experience leading successful go-to market strategies
and teams from startups to established firms. In the renewable energy
industry, she has held leadership roles with SolarCity, SunPower and Recurrent
Energy. She has built high-performing teams, grown startup pipelines from
$0-$50 million, channel pipelines from zero to over one gigawatt, and closed
over $150 million worth of business with clients like Facebook, Kendall-Jackson
Wines, Kaiser Permanente, Macy’s and Applied Materials.
In this episode, Kate
sits down with Lacey and Melissa to discuss the expansion of the solar industry
in Texas and what excites her about the market and the products and services
that SolarCity brings to its customers.
In 2014, the EPA, under President Obama’s Climate Action Plan, proposed a commonsense approach to cut carbon pollution from power plants. The Clean Power Plan, according to the EPA, seeks to maintain an affordable, reliable energy system, while cutting pollution and protecting our health and environment. Critics are afraid that is will negatively impact our economy, energy security and grid reliability.
To discuss the Clean Power Plan, we have with us today Dr. David Spence.
As a professor at the University
of Texas, David, as he puts it, works at the intersection of law, politics and
He teaches Law, Politics &
Regulation at the University of Texas at Austin at both the McCombs School of
Business and the School of Law.
David is Co-Director of the Energy
Management & Innovation Center at UT’s McCombs School of Business and is
co-author of the leading energy law casebook, Energy, Economics and the
Rodium Group study on rise in NG under the CPP: http://rhg.com/reports/commodity-market-impacts-of-epas-clean-power-plan