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AEE and the MIT-IPC convene executive forum series to spur adoption of advanced energy

First session brought together advanced energy and utility executives to address challenges to rapid adoption of innovative energy technologies.
Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) and the MIT Industrial Performance Center (MIT-IPC) today announced a national series of regional forums that will bring together business leaders to promote regional economic growth through advanced energy business and technology innovation as well as effective energy and environmental policies.

The first AEE/MIT-IPC Utility and Advanced Energy Executive Forum, which took place March 6 at MIT, brought top utility company executives from around the country together with executives of advanced energy companies to identify actions at the regional and national levels that could accelerate adoption of advanced energy within the utility sector. The closed-door, invitation-only FORUM? will result in an action plan framework that will identify a roadmap for achieving tangible results throughout the United States focusing on:
  1. Helping advanced energy companies understand the taxonomy of utility needs;
  2. Aligning business models and incentives so utility companies can embrace innovation that creates value for diverse stakeholders;
  3. Assisting regulators in encouraging innovation in the electric power sector.
As convening collaborators, the MIT-IPC — a multidisciplinary research center focused on innovation, productivity and competitiveness — and AEE, a national business association representing the advanced energy industry, believe that an effort to remove barriers to advanced energy adoption must take place at both the state and federal levels. Various regions are innovating successfully today within the power sector. The forum provides an opportunity to share and build upon these successes and discuss future opportunities. The Executive Forum collaboration is led by AEE co-founder and co-chair Hemant Taneja, a managing director of General Catalyst Partners; and Richard Lester, the Japan Steel Industry Professor and head of MIT’s Department of Nuclear Science and Engineering and the faculty director of the MIT-IPC.

Advanced Energy Economy is proud to join with the IPC to draw attention to the potential for transforming America’s economy through advanced energy technologies,” said Hemant Taneja. “Advanced energy companies are creating economic value today and will create even more if we make the most of local resources. These forums will forge public-private partnerships to leverage the assets of each region for faster adoption of new technologies and faster growth of the companies that produce them.”

“This Forum Series is part of a broad-based effort to envision a more innovative power sector for the country. The electric power industry is on the front lines of America’s energy innovation challenge, and by engaging the leaders of innovative energy companies with executives of companies that could adopt their innovations, we believe we can create a road map toward that future,” says Lester, who is renowned for his work on energy and innovation. “By joining together on neutral ground, we can start a dialogue that leads to a more innovative energy sector in the country, faster growth for local and regional economies, and — crucially — a more effective response to the challenge of climate change.”

AEE and the MIT-IPC are co-organizing the series of regional events. The AEE/MIT Executive Forums will examine key challenges to advanced energy market adoption, focusing on topics of local relevance at each event. Forum locations under consideration for future events include San Francisco, Houston and other regional advanced energy centers.

Each forum will build on the previous discussions in the series and actions/partnerships will be formed to implement the recommendations and further guide AEE and MIT-IPC initiatives around research, policy advocacy, capital innovation, and business-to-business engagement to accelerate advanced energy market adoption.

"The AEE/MIT-IPC Executive Forum Series is constructive because it represents a frank and open dialogue in the effort to facilitate regional economic growth and reliable electric service through energy technology innovation," says Randy Mehrberg, president, PSEG Energy Holdings  "I particularly appreciate the constructive tone directed toward mutually beneficial solutions, with a focus on improved systems, advanced technologies, a cleaner environment, and our customers. This dialogue will prove valuable in helping to make America's energy economy more dynamic in the years ahead."

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