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Keynote speakers bring new verve to 2017 Maui Energy Conference

By Staff | Feb 9, 2017

Guillermo (Gil) Penalosa advises decision-makers and communities on how to create vibrant cities and healthy communities for everyone, regardless of age, gender and social, economic or ethnic background.

KAHULUI – A broader focus has attracted new and captivating speakers to this year’s Maui Energy Conference, to be held at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center on March 22-23. Hosted by the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development and Maui Economic Development Board (MEDB), the conference theme covers topics from electricity and gas to transportation and water delivery systems.

Keynote speaker Guillermo (Gil) Penalosa is passionate about cities for all people. He is the founder and chair of the board of 8 80 Cities, an internationally recognized nonprofit organization based in Canada.

8 80 Cities was founded on the philosophy that if you create a great city for an eight-year-old and an 80-year-old, you will establish a successful city for all people.

Penalosa is also chair of World Urban Parks, as well as senior advisor to Children & Nature, Vision Zero Network, and America Walks. His leadership and advice have been sought out in more than 250 different cities across six continents.

“While urban design might not be the first thing you think of when it comes to the Maui Energy Conference,” said Conference Program Committee Member Jonathan Koehn, “Urban design dictates lifestyle, and lifestyle has a huge impact on people’s energy footprint. There are so many ways that the physical infrastructure around us influences our energy choices.”

Another draw for this year’s conference will be Carol Sim, environmental affairs director at Alaska Airlines.

Alaska Airlines has been a leader in the airline industry in utilizing alternative jet fuel. It made history in November flying the world’s first commercial flight using a new sustainable alternative jet fuel made from forest residuals.

Sim will join the panel on Innovations in Transportation, which takes a look at what steps can be taken to create and facilitate a resilient transportation sector.

A new feature for the program will include a number of case studies presented in special 15-minute segments.

Boris von Bormann of Mercedes-Benz will share their work with the world’s largest second use battery storage. in efforts to stabilize the grid, 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 1,000 battery systems from second-generation smart for-two electric drive cars.

Hawaii Energy’s case study will highlight a few of their success stories that showcase their commitment to helping small businesses of Hawaii lower operating costs through energy efficiency.

Theodore Peck from Holu Energy will present 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.

In a fourth case study presentation, Silver Spring Networks will share details on how its utility customers deliver savings to consumers via AMI and Smart Grid deployments.

The 2017 Maui Energy Conference is shaping up to be a timely and innovative forum as Hawaii transitions to a clean energy economy. For information on the full program, how to register and other details, visit www.mauienergyconference.com.