Last week, AEE hosted Energy Forward, our members and partners conference in Washington, D.C. The sessions were a great opportunity for AEE members to network, participate in wide-ranging and timely discussions, and engage on federal policy issues. The event included visits with key offices in the Senate and House of Representatives, as well as opportunities for our members to meet with federal policymakers and thought leaders.
After a morning session during which AEE members went to Capitol Hill to meet with key Congress Members and staff to describe the Advanced Energy Now 2015 Market Report and the importance of the advanced energy industry to their states, we welcomed Tom Hassenboehler, chief Republican counsel to the House Energy and Commerce Committee. Tom’s remarks about the direction that this Congress may take on energy policy discussed the need to modernize the grid.and to take advantage of new advanced energy technologies. He said that the House of Representatives plans on moving an energy infrastructure and grid modernization bill through the legislative process over the coming months. Tom’s comments mirrored the theme of a recent hearing in which two AEE companies – GridCo Systems and Enphase presented testimony on the need to modernize the electricity system
The Senate has also signaled that it intends to move energy legislation and has signaled that it is looking for ways to aid the advanced energy industry. However, as we have noted before, Congress still struggles to find ways to move workable legislation through both bodies. The federal budget appears to be the next showdown.
AEE Members were also honored to have EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy give remarks about the Clean Power Plan and its importance to the country. She talked about the need to land the rule in a way that withstands judicial challenges, but also deploys advanced technologies to modernize the grid. And she had this to say about the advanced energy industry: “You rock!”
AEE remains deeply engaged in the Clean Power Plan, both directly and with our state partners. We commissioned work by the Brattle Group on how reliability can be maintained under the CPP, and our webinar discussing how grid operators can avoid any reliability issues stemming from the CPP broke our previous records for webinar registration and attendance. It is not to be missed!