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Ige to Participate in Hawai‘i Energy Conference on Maui

March 19, 2019, 12:31 PM HST · Updated March 19, 12:31 PM
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Governor David Ige will be featured among a number of key decision makers from throughout the nation at the 6th Annual Hawaiʻi Energy Conference taking place at the Maui Arts Cultural Center on March 27 and 28, 2019.

Gov. Ige File courtesy office of Gov. David Ige.

Leaders will exchange ideas on responding to the challenges associated with replacing fossil fuels with diverse and renewable energy resources.

Governor Ige will join the panel Moving Away from Convention: Innovations in Regulatory Policy.  Other panelists include: Michael Picker, President, California Public Utilities Commission; Abigail Anthony, Commissioner, Rhode Island Public Utilities Commission; and Jennifer Potter, Commissioner of the Hawai’i Public Utilities Commission.

Some of the central questions this panel will explore include the following:

  • What regulatory initiatives are Commissions undertaking to improve utility performance?
  • What incentives have been approved for fuel cost and renewables procurement?
  • What incentives will work to align the interests of the utility with public policy?
  • If new incentives are crafted, can they avoid increasing the ultimate cost to rate payers?
  • What instances make sense to transform the market through incentives?
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Hawaiʻi has experienced enormous growth in distributed energy resources, primarily photovoltaic systems. Thus, this year’s conference will take an in-depth look at the innovative policies and technologies that continue to allow rapid growth in PV, and will compare Hawaiʻi solutions with those in Colorado, California and other states.

“If you are coming from a place where distributed solar PV is beginning to ramp up, there is a lot to learn from both what we did right and what we did wrong in Hawaiʻi,” says Doug McLeod, Conference Program Committee Chair. “If you live here in the islands, this is an unparalleled opportunity to interact with the leaders in the energy community.”

Other panels at the conference will discuss topics such as the interplay between fossil and renewable energy; a comparison of paths to 100% renewable energy; and unleashing the power of clean energy in housing markets.

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The HEC will be held at the Maui Arts Cultural Center March 27 & 28. Presented by the Maui Economic Development Board (MEDB) and supported by the County of Maui Office of Economic Development.

This event consistently attracts energy industry leaders from Hawaiʻi, the Mainland, Japan and Europe to exchange ideas on how to better serve the community in today’s rapidly changing energy environment. Highlights of the conference include thought-provoking keynote speakers, panel sessions, case studies, exhibits and ample time for networking.

“The rapid development of new business models, regulatory processes and rules, alongside burgeoning technological improvements in energy production, delivery, and storage have wide-ranging implications for all energy stakeholders, especially those directly involved in building the energy sector of the future,” observed Frank De Rego Jr., Hawaiʻi Energy Conference Program Committee Vice Chair and Director of Business Development Projects at MEDB. “The Hawaiʻi Energy Conference provides a forum to discuss the future of energy with emphasis on a practical and iterative approach to innovation.”

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