What is Cape Cod's energy future?

Local groups announce Cape-wide conference on September 22

Where will our energy come from in the future? How much will it cost? What can we do to reduce our dependence on foreign oil? These are just a few of the questions that will be discussed at Cape Cod's first major energy conference: Shaping Cape Cod's Energy Future, which will be held at the Sheraton Four Points Hotel in Hyannis on Thursday, September 22. Speakers from across the country will discuss current energy issues, progressive policy initiatives, and innovative technologies. A variety of vendors will be on hand to showcase their products and services. And, with the public's input, local decision makers will begin to shape Cape Cod's energy future.

Speakers from across the country will discuss current energy issues, progressive policy initiatives, and innovative technologies.

"The Cape Cod Economic Development Council believes that many opportunities for economic growth exist if our region chooses to move towards a more sustainable energy future," said Dan Dray, Administrator for the Cape Cod Economic Development Council. "The EDC is the lead sponsor for this conference because we know there is tremendous economic potential available if we keep our energy dollars local and work to create jobs in the clean energy sector."

Transition to a cleaner and green energy future

"The transition to a cleaner and green energy future on Cape Cod will require good policy at the town and county level, sustainable behavior at the individual level, and the implementation of technologies to economically provide energy to our homes, businesses, municipal infrastructure, and vehicles," said Chris Powicki, Principal of Water Energy and Ecology Information Services, one of the organizations involved in planning the conference. "By reducing our energy demand and harnessing our own resources, we can fuel economic growth while setting a national example of energy independence."

After a set of morning speakers, who will set the stage with national, regional, state, and local perspectives, the conference will split into two tracks, one focused on policy and the other on technology. The day will conclude with a panel of local and regional officials and decision makers that will attempt to synthesize the information and examples provided into applicable actions, models and policy guidelines for Cape Cod.

Barnstable County Commissioner William Doherty will make the welcoming remarks

Elected officials, municipal and county employees and committee members, business people, builders, architects, trades people, and interested citizens are strongly encouraged to attend this event. "We need to act now," says Megan Amsler, Executive Director of Cape & Islands Self-Reliance, the main organizer of the conference. "This conference is a great opportunity for local people to learn what has been working in other communities, to discuss options for Cape Cod, and to participate in a process that can move us toward a more sustainable energy future that helps develop local jobs and works to reduce our consumption and reliance on fossil fuels."

Registration is $15 and includes a continental breakfast, lunch buffet, and vendor reception; scholarships are available for municipal officials. The full agenda, list of speakers, and registration information can be found here, or by calling Self-Reliance at (508) 457-7679.

Day long Conference Details

Welcoming remarks by William Doherty, Barnstable County Commissioner will be followed by morning presentations moderated by Warren Leon, Deputy Director of MA Renewable Energy Trust. The featured speakers include: Randy Udall, Director of the Community Office for Resource Efficiency, Aspen, CO; Steven Strong, President of Solar Design Associates, Harvard, MA; Andrew Gottlieb, Deputy Secretary of the Office for Commonwealth Development and Gordian Raacke, Executive Director of Renewable Energy Long Island.

During lunch, Chris Powicki, Principal of Water, Energy and Ecology Information Services, will give a short presentation describing the forces that will shape the long-term energy future on a worldwide basis and how they can be leveraged to establish the Cape & Islands region as a state, national, and global leader in the development and application of clean energy technologies.

Afternoon schedule

Technology & Policy Tracks will be held in the afternoon beginning at 1:00. The Technology Track will be moderated by John Abrams, South Mountain Company.  The panel participants are: Steven Strong, Solar Design Associates; Henry DuPont, Lorax Energy Systems; Richard Lawrence, Cape & Islands Self-Reliance; and Karina Funk, Massachusetts Technology Collaborative.

The Policy Track will be moderated by Greg Watson of the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative

The Policy Track will be moderated by Greg Watson, Massachusetts Technology Collaborative.  The panel participants are: Mary Jane Curran, Cape Cod Community College; Kate Warner, Vineyard Energy Project; Kim Lundgren, International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives; Randy Udall, Community Office for Resource Efficiency; Gordian Raacke, Renewable Energy Long Island

The last panel of the afternoon will involve local elected officials, agency representatives, and industry experts in a discussion with Q&A. Dan Wolf of Cape Air will moderate the panel.  The panel participants are: Fred Fenlon, Barnstable County Assembly of Delegates; Kevin Galligan, Cape Light Compact; Matt Patrick, State Representative, Megan Amsler, Cape & Islands Self-Reliance Corp., Heather Harper, Assistant Town Administrator, Falmouth, MA, John Lipman, Cape Cod Commission.

The conference is organized by:  Cape and Islands Self-Reliance, Cape Cod Community College, Cape Cod Economic Development Council, Cape Light Compact, Waquoit Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, Water Energy & Ecology Information Services

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