Monday, June 23, 2014
Third Annual Utah Governor's Energy Development Summit
The third annual Utah Governor's Energy Development Summit took place June 3 and 4 at Salt Lake City's Salt Palace Convention Center. With more than 1,200 guests in attendance and 100 booths for a networking trade show, the Summit was another success.
Throughout the Summit, breakout sessions allowed guests to hear from several panels on subjects from alternative transportation to Southern Utah’s solar energy projects.
Utah Clean Cities’ Executive Director Robin Erickson hosted a panel that discussed alternative transportation from a fleet perspective. Among the panel was Scott Lavery (UPS), Sam Lee (State of Utah), Murrell Martin (Utah State School Board), and C. Lance Allen (Waste Management). Each representative spoke about their actions to move forward with transportation changes and how the changes have improved their companies.
Every attendant gathered for lunch where the Governor’s Excellence in Energy awards was announced along with a speech from keynote speaker Ted Nordhaus, co-founder of The Breakthrough Institute. Gov. Herbert took time to acknowledge President Obama’s new plan to reduce emissions by 30 percent within the next 15 years.
“There is concern out there in the business community that this could have a detrimental effect on the economy,” Herbert said as he noted that Utah relies on coal for 80 percent of all electricity in the state.
Gov. Herbert unveiled a 10-year energy efficiency and conservation plan, which includes transportation and air quality project outlines. In the plan, there is a stress on education and outreach to the public for Utah to have better fuels and vehicles.
“We are trying to lead by example, and we expect that the public will do its part too,” Gov. Herbert said in view of being educated on the topic leads to more efficiency.
In addition to the 10-year energy efficiency plan, Gov. Herbert revealed one more surprise to the audience. He announced that Utah is one of three states participating in pilot projects to convert natural gas into ethanol. This would help reduce fine particulate pollution.
The Summit was truly a success in bringing together businesses, non-profits, state legislators, and the public to discuss what is happening in energy development. Utah Clean Cities plans on supporting the governor’s education plan as it continues its efforts to educate the public on petroleum and idle reduction, and alternative fuels.
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