Southwest Clean Energy Transmission Summit
University of New Mexico
Science and Technology Park Rotunda
801 University Blvd, SE, Park North, 1st Floor-East
Albuquerque, New Mexico
April 1, 2015
**Please scroll down for event videos & presentations**
With keynote addresses and remarks from:
The Southwest Clean Energy Transmission Summit is the tenth regional summit hosted by Americans for a Clean Energy Grid (ACEG), a project of the Energy Future Coalition in Washington, DC. ACEG supports the extension and modernization of the high-voltage grid as essential infrastructure for a modern society and access to the clean energy that will be necessary if we are to avoid the worst effects of climate change, and recognizes the regional nature of many of the related issues.
ACEG summits bring together all key stakeholder groups, including utilities, environmental advocates, consumer interests, landowners, state and federal elected officials and regulators, renewable energy producers, and transmission developers, to reach a mutual understanding of the opportunities and barriers confronting the grid, and a consensus that the benefits of moving forward exceed the costs. Panels are often moderated by journalists and bloggers to ensure balanced and non-technical debate, and to promote the education of a larger public audience on these critical issues.
A special thank you to Southwest Clean Energy Transmission Summit event sponsor High Country News.
The following PowerPoint presentations are currently available:
Bill White, Senior Adviser, Americans for a Clean Energy Grid
Gary Graham, Lands Program Director, Western Resource Advocates
Jeff Mechenbier, Director T&D Planning and Contracts, Public Service Company New Mexico
Julia Frayer, Managing Director, London Economics Group
Keith Sparks, Director of Development, Clean Line Energy
Patrick Griebel, New Mexico Renewable Energy Industries Association
Tom Beach, Principal, Crossborder Energy
Introductions, Special Remarks from Congresswoman Michelle Lujan Grisham, and Morning Keynote from Suedeen Kelly
Panel #1: Will inter-regional transmission usher in a national clean energy grid
and if so, do we want one?
Panel #2: Is transmission a good investment for reliability, resource, and economic development?; and Special Remarks from Congressman Ben Ray Lujan
Lunch Keynote Address by Senator Martin Heinrich
Panel #3: Are transmission expansions and upgrades compatible with both small and large scale clean energy?
Panel #4: Does transmission have a role in achieving environmental goals?
More details and discussion of the panel topics can be found below.
Panel # 1: Will inter-regional transmission usher in a national clean energy grid and if so, do we want one? A major impediment to developing, delivering, and balancing the nation’s best and most abundant renewable resources is the lack of transmission capacity to move electricity between balancing authorities, planning regions, regional transmission organizations (RTOs), and interconnections. New Mexico is home to rich wind and solar resources and also sits at the intersection of the nation’s three major interconnections, making it an ideal place to examine this potential.
Panel #2: Is transmission a good investment for reliability, resource, and economic development? Transmission supports wind and solar development, stabilizes electricity prices for all customers, and provides reliable and affordable power to major industries, including agriculture, information technology, manufacturing, and energy. Numerous transmission proposals in various stages of development and approval provide models renewable resources in New Mexico and the Southwest.
Panel #3: Are transmission expansions and upgrades compatible with both small and large scale clean energy? States across the region and the country are struggling to adapt longstanding policies and regulations to rapid changes in distributed energy technologies, notably steep drops in the cost of residential solar PV panels, energy efficiency, smart controls, and energy storage. New approaches are emerging that recognize and value the benefits of both the grid and distributed generation, and allow both to move forward without harming each other.
Panel #4: Does transmission have a role in achieving environmental goals? EPA’s regional haze rule and its proposed Clean Power Plan to regulate carbon emissions are ushering in a rapid transition away from a predominantly coal-powered generation fleet to one powered by much higher shares of renewables and natural gas. This panel will highlight the potential role of transmission, renewables, and other clean energy resources in achieving near and long term environmental goals in a timely and cost effective manner.