All Things Energy: Pursuing New Opportunities for Electricity and Beyond

Hawaii’s transition to a clean energy economy is on its way. The focus of the 2017 Maui Energy Conference explored new and innovative pathways to a vibrant and clean energy future.  Energy experts and stakeholders from across the U.S. tackled critical cross-sector issues and examined groundbreaking strategies: How can we make our energy systems more resilient and sustainable? What types of rate structures and incentives will be necessary? What synergies across energy sectors are possible? From electricity and gas to transportation and water delivery systems…all sectors will play a vital role in creating the new energy landscape.

Press Coverage of the 2017 Maui Energy Conference


Maui Energy Conference

Download the Program Booklet


Maui Energy Conference
Photos – Day 1, Wed, Mar 22 (1)
Photos – Day 1, Wed, May 22 (2)
Maui Energy Conference
Photos – Day 2, Thurs, May 23
Maui Energy Conference You-tube video
Video – Day 1, Wed, May 22
Maui Energy Conference you-tube videos
Video – Day 2, Thurs May 23



Introduction by Jonathan Koehn, Regional Sustainability Coordinator, City of Boulder
The 8 80 City: Creating Vibrant, Healthy, and Resilient Communities for All
Guillermo (Gil) Penalosa, MBA, PhDhc, CSP
Founder and Chair, 8 80 Cities
Chair, World Urban Parks
President, Gil Penalosa & Associates
Frank De Rego Jr., Director of Business Development Projects, Maui Economic Development Board
How do we define resilience and sustainability? What do these look like? What strategies will get us to an energy system that is resilient? The challenge of achieving decarbonized energy production and maintaining a reliable, safe, affordable, secure and resilient energy system is formidable.


Moderated by:
Ben Sullivan, Energy and Sustainability Manager, County of Kauai
Delavane Diaz, Senior Technical Leader, Electric Power Research Institute
Mark Glick, Energy Policy & Innovation Specialist, Hawaii Natural Energy Institute
Scott Seu, Senior Vice President, Public Affairs, Hawaiian Electric Company
Michelle Wyman, Executive Director, National Council for Science and Environment
Facilitated by Dave Parsons, Chief of Policy and Research, Hawaii Public Utilities Commission


Randall Iwase, Chairman, Hawaii Public Utilities Commission
We explore the nexus between agriculture production, use of water, and production of energy. With the closure of Hawaii’s last sugar plantation, what role will agriculture play in energy resilience?  What are the possibilities for locally produced Biomass and Biofuels? What are the trade-offs in potential food security vs. energy security? In a global marketplace is food or energy security a myth?


Moderated by:
Jonathan Koehn, Regional Sustainability Coordinator, City of Boulder
Paul Brewbaker, Principal and Economist, TZ Economics; and Lecturer, University of Hawaii
Kyle Datta, General Partner, Ulupono Initiative
Jeffrey Pearson, Deputy Director of Hawaii’s Department of Land and Natural Resources Commission on Water Resource Management, State of Hawaii
Rick Volner, General Manager, Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar Company
CASE STUDY: Energy Efficiency with Hawaii Energy
Presented by:
Brian Kealoha, Executive Director, Hawaii Energy/Leidos Engineering, LLCSmall businesses are the backbone of Hawai‘i’s economic vitality and resilience.   Hawai‘i Energy is committed to helping them lower operating costs through energy efficiency. Through programs developed specifically for small businesses, Hawai‘i Energy has already helped over 400 Maui County small businesses become energy efficient. We will highlight a few of the success stories who aimed for 100% renewable energy but started first with energy efficiency before moving on to PV and energy storage.
What market signals are policy makers sending to energy stakeholders? Is it possible to stabilize energy prices and electricity rates, reduce carbon emissions, and provide reliable, safe, affordable, and resilient energy all at the same time? What measures will policy makers implement to protect vulnerable populations?


Moderated by:
Doug McLeod, Member, DKK Energy Services LLC
Alan Arakawa, Mayor, County of Maui
Brian Kealoha, Executive Director, Hawaii Energy/Leidos Engineering, LLC
Chris Lee, House Representative and Chair of the Committee on Energy and Environmental Protection, State of Hawaii
Alan Oshima, President and Chief Executive Officer, Hawaiian Electric Company
CASE STUDY: Energy Storage with Holu Energy
Presented by:
Theodore (Ted) Peck, Chief Executive Officer, Holu Energy Two case studies of commercial on-grid microgrids operational in Hawaii with third party ownership, integrating PV and energy storage systems to create multiple value streams on both sides of the meter. 
This panel of HNEI faculty will discuss current research projects on Maui and throughout the state that are addressing grid resiliency as Hawaii continues progress towards clean energy goals.  The faculty members will discuss findings from recent HNEI-led demonstration projects, grid integration studies, and plans for future projects.


Moderated by:
John Cole, Assistant Specialist, Hawaii Natural Energy Institute, University of Hawaii
James (Jay) Griffin, Senior Energy Analyst, Hawaii Natural Energy Institute, University of Hawaii
Rick Rocheleau, Director, Hawaii Natural Energy Institute, University of Hawaii
Leon Roose, Esq., Chief Technologist, GridSTART Research Team, Hawaii Natural Energy Institute, University of Hawaii
EMERGING TRENDS IN ENERGY POLICY:  Nuclear Energy- Old Peril or New Promise
What are the social, cultural, legal, and economic challenges of decarbonization using nuclear energy? Does nuclear energy have a role in Hawaii’s energy future? We will present a critical discussion to address community concerns and fears regarding nuclear energy.


Moderated by:
Gavin Bade, Associate Editor, Utility Dive
Henry Curtis, Ililani Media
Alex Gilbert, Co-founder, SparkLibrary
Introduction by Jeanne Skog, President, Maui Economic Development Board, Inc.The Resilience of Scientific Integrity during Uncertain Times
Michelle Wyman
Executive Director, National Council for Science and Environment
What opportunities exist to commercialize new innovative energy technology? How will this activity create jobs locally? Can innovative energy rate design and pricing help build a strong economy? How the use of incentives aid in this transition? Will expanding the electricity RPS to other areas such as other utilities or transportation (aviation, ground, and maritime) create a more resilient energy economy in the long run?


Moderated by:
Luis Salaveria, Director, Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism, State of Hawaii
Aki Marceau, Project Design & Partnerships, Energy Excelerator
Kush Patel, Senior Managing Consultant, E3
Cheryl Roberto, Partner, Utility Transformation & Regulation, Twenty First Century Utilities
TECHNOLOGY: Is Storage the Key to Resilience
We will discuss specific storage technologies and their contribution to resiliency.  Are these systems ready for deployment and cost effective?  Do they provide more than one function on the grid?  Can customers provide support for their own electrical needs through storage, especially in a Distributed Energy Resources (DER) scenario?


Moderated by:
Fred Redell, Energy Commissioner, Office of Economic Development, County of Maui
Lorraine Akiba, Commissioner, Hawaii Public Utilities Commission
Erica He, Advisor, Business Development Energy Solutions, Sumitomo Electric Industries, Ltd.
Michael Reiley, President, HNu Energy
CASE STUDY: World’s Largest Second Use Battery Storage
Presented by:
Boris Von Bormann, Chief Executive Officer, Mercedes-Benz Energy Americas, LLC Daimler AG, The Mobility House AG and GETEC have joined forces to develop a 13 MWh battery storage project in Germany using a total of 1000 battery systems from second-generation smart for two electric drive cars. This world’s largest 2nd use battery storage went into operation on the German primary balancing market at the end of 2016. The process will not only help to stabilize the grid as more electricity is fed in from fluctuating renewable energy sources, but can help to improve the environmental footprint of electric vehicles and make e-mobility more cost efficient.
TECHNOLOGY: Role of the Smart Grid
How will the “smart grid” add to grid stability and resiliency? Will the “smart grid” increase exposure to security breaches and what mitigation measures are needed to reduce risk? How can we secure customer’s personal information, including energy usage patterns?


Moderated by:
Don Reeves, Chief Technology Officer, Silver Spring Networks
Colton Ching, Senior Vice President, Planning & Technology, Hawaiian Electric Company
Kazuyuki Takada, Director, Smart Community Department, New Energy and Industrial Technology  Development Organization (NEDO)
Makoto Watanabe, Executive Director, New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO)
Joshua Wong, President & CEO, Opus One Solutions
CASE STUDY: Savings for Consumers Derived from AMI & Smart Grid Connectivity
Presented by:
Don Reeves, Chief Technology Officer, Silver Spring NetworksSilver Spring Networks will share details on how its utility customers deliver savings to consumers via AMI and Smart Grid deployments. The case study will both summarize findings, as well as review the technology and process improvements required to deliver the savings.
TECHNOLOGY PANEL: Innovations in Transportation
What steps can be taken to create and facilitate a resilient transportation sector? Are there unique issues for islands? What are the challenges and expectations in creating a resilient system? What are the costs/benefits of hydrogen, biomass and other alternatives?


Moderated by:
Rick Rocheleau, Director, Hawaii Natural Energy Institute, University of Hawaii
Murray Clay, Managing Partner, Ulupono Initiative
Bob King, President, Pacific Biodiesel
Guillermo (Gil) Penalosa, Founder and Chair, 8 80 Cities; Chair, World Urban Parks; and President, Gil Penalosa & Associates
Carol Sim, Director of Environmental Affairs, Alaska Airlines
CASE STUDY: Alaska Airlines – How We Track Sustainability
Presented by:
Carol Sim, Director of Environmental Affairs, Alaska Airlines
MOBILITY:  Getting a Move On 
Air, ground, and marine transportation represents more than two thirds of the fossil fuel consumption in Hawaii. We will explore and discuss the opportunities and challenges in the transportation sector. What role can land use and urban planning play in reducing reliance on fossil fuels? What companies are leading in this area? What opportunities are there in the electrification of ground transportation?


Moderated by:
Jeff Mikulina, Executive Director, Blue Planet Foundation
Michael Clay, Professor of Urban Planning, Brigham Young University
Laura McDonald, President, Sunrise Strategies Group
Michele McLean, Deputy Director, Department of Planning, County of Maui
Joelle Simonpietri, Program Manager for Energy Research, Applied Research Laboratory, University of Hawaii

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Program Committee

Lisa Briggs | Regional Director of Government Affairs, Sempra Renewables
Colton Ching | Senior Vice President, Planning & Technology, Hawaiian Electric
Frank De Rego Jr. | Director of Business Development Projects, Maui Economic Development Board, Inc.
James “Jay” Griffin | Senior Energy Analyst, Hawaii Natural Energy Institute
Jonathan Koehn | Regional Sustainability Coordinator, City of Boulder
Doug McLeod | Chair, Conference Program Committee
Sebastian “Bash” Nola | Utility Consultant and former So. Cal. Edison Executive
Dave Parsons | Chief of Policy and Research, Hawaii Public Utilities Commission

Sponsors 2017

Maui Energy Conference sponsors

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