Sign Up for CREA Energy Innovations Summit

On October 29, the Colorado Rural Electric Association will hold its annual Energy Innovations Summit in downtown Denver. Those interested in the latest in energy issues are encouraged to attend.

On the agenda are several leaders in the energy industry who will enlighten guests on the latest research and developments in energy. Key topics include:
• Rare earth metals: Critical shortage or workaround opportunity?
• A regional project overview on power from biomass.
• The newest developments in car technology.
• The future of coal-fired power generation.

Energy experts who will be speaking about these topics and more include United Power CEO Ron Asche, San Miguel Power Association CEO Kevin Ritter, and Tri-State Generation and Transmission Senior Vice President of Production Mike McInnnis.

Several exhibitors are scheduled to attend including GE Appliances, USDA Rural Development, Hamilton Associates, and Western Area Power Administration.

Anyone who wants to attend the Energy Innovations Summit, either as a guest or as an exhibitor, can find more information and register by visiting www.regonline.com/EnergyInnovationsSummit. Additional information, including literature from the 2011 Energy Innovations Summits, can be found at crea.coop.

CREA Summit Focuses on Energy Innovation

Rare earth metals and their importance in new energy innovations were topics in one session of the Colorado Rural Electric Association’s 2012 Energy Innovations Summit October 29 in downtown Denver. Sessions also discussed electric vehicles, nuclear energy, biomass development and more.

In this ever-evolving world of energy policy, CREA works to keep its members on top of the latest developments. As part of that effort, CREA has hosted the Energy Innovations Summit for the past three years and opened it to others outside the electric co-op community who are interested in these topics.

This year’s Summit included a robust discussion of the future of coal-fired generation with executives from Xcel, Colorado Springs Utilities and Tri-State. All of the panelists agreed that the currently-low natural gas prices are a boon for utilities and their consumers, but the companies will all continue to rely on generation from their coal-fired fleets for a long time to come. The utilities representatives also reviewed the technologies they are exploring to reduce emissions from the coal plants to keep them viable into the future.

One of the highlights of the conference was the luncheon presentation by Dr. Tom Anklam from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Dr. Anklam provided a fascinating look at the Laser Inertial Fusion Energy or LIFE project that he and his team are working on in California. The potential for energy production from elements found in seawater is game changing and Dr. Anklam’s presentation demonstrated that great strides are being made in that technology.

The day wrapped up with a discussion of energy venture capital opportunities in Colorado.

Attendees declared the day a success as the Summit brought together diverse stakeholders to talk about challenges and solutions in today’s electric industry. Many points of view were offered and many opinions were shared. It was a day of looking to the future, working to find ways to keep electricity reliable, affordable and safe for electric co-op members.

—Kent Singer, CREA Executive Director

EnergyWise Works with State to Develop Efficiency Project

Over the last several weeks, CREA and several of our co-op members have met with various state and federal agencies to develop a pilot energy efficiency project as part of CREA’s Colorado EnergyWise Project. The pilot program will be known as the Colorado Dairy and Irrigation Efficiency Program and will involve four co-ops at the pilot stage (Morgan County, Poudre Valley, United Power and Highline Electric).
Our co-ops will be partnering with the state’s Colorado Energy Office to perform audits of the operations of co-op member-owners with the goal of installing energy-saving equipment at selected dairy barns and irrigation systems. Using a grant from the Department of Energy, the Colorado Energy Office will fund 12 audits and from those audits select farming operations where it makes sense to install new motors or lighting to improve energy efficiency.

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