Contact: Emily Gombar
Ph: 202 530-7701
American Council On Renewable Energy (ACORE)
Ph: +1-202-393-0001 x7552
Event: Phase II 2008
Washington, DC- December 4, 2008 - The American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE) today wrapped up its two day 2008 Phase II of Renewable Energy in America National Policy Forum on Capitol Hill among a sea of renewable energy executives, financial experts, and policy makers, who, despite the global economic turndown, remain optimistic about the industryâEUR(TM)s future. Policy recommendations on renewable energy, energy efficiency, sustainable development, the environment and green jobs dominated the two day session.
There has never been a more opportune time to instill the philosophies of Phase II into federal policy, said Michael Eckhart, President of ACORE. There is a pressing need for policy stability so that companies have a reasoned basis for making long-term investments in factories and the financial community has confidence making investments in new projects.
Panel sessions focused on how the renewable energy industry is poised to make impactful contributions to address both our nationâEUR(TM)s energy needs and job creation. Panelists and speakers offered practical policy recommendations for the incoming Administration and Congress.
New York Times columnist and keynote speaker Thomas Friedman suggested that the change in administrations may also signal a much needed new direction in energy policy. "America is 'exploding' with innovators and entrepreneurs in renewable energy, said Friedman. But until now we have not had a government that has fostered that innovative spirit." Friedman suggested that America will have succeeded in bringing renewable energy into the mainstream "when we stop using the term 'green' in discussing what needs to be done."
Iowa Governor Chet Culver spoke about the progress his state has made. "In under forty years, we've gone from a state that depended on outside resources for its energy, to one that is now self sufficient and even exports excesses of its renewable energy generation."
Former Senator Tom Daschle who was attending the conference in his own capacity, spoke about the progress on biofuels noting that the United States must continue to turn to biofuels and next generation ethanol to reduce our dependence on oil.
Renewable energy markets are facing new challenges - we need to take both short and long term action now, remarked Michael Ware, Managing Director of Good Energies, during his discussion about specific policy changes. In the short term, we need to renew PTC/ITC legislation to permit tax credits to be purchased and sold. And in the long term, we need to prepare the American people for renewable energy and to enact policies to level the playing field.
Reinforcing this point, Kevin Walsh, Managing Director of Renewable Energy at GE Financial Services said, "We're not asking for more money, we are looking at finding a way to utilize what we've been given."
For a complete transcript of the panel sessions please visit the ACORE Phase II website at www.acorephaseii.com. Panel and participants included the following:
"Policy for Transportation Fuels"
- Session Chair: Roger Ballentine, President, Green Strategies Inc.
- Senator Tom Daschle
- Jeff Broin, President and CEO, POET
- Jim Woolsey, former Director of Central Intelligence and Venture Partner, Vantage Point Ventures
"Policy for Electric Power"
- Session Chair: Andrew Lunquist, President, Blue Water Strategies
- Dan Arvizu, Director, NREL
- Kevin Walsh, Managing Director, Renewable Energy, GE
- Tom Werner, CEO, Sunpower
- Brad Gammons, Vice President, Global Energy & Utilities Industry, IBM
- Pat Wood, Principal, Wood3 Resources LLC, and former FERC Chairman
"Financing the Renewable Energy Scale-up"
- Session Chair: Hank Habicht, Managing Partner, SAIL Ventures
- Tracy Wolstencroft, Managing Director, Goldman Sachs
- John Cavalier, Managing Partner, Hudson Capital
- Michael Ware, Managing Director, Good Energies