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Efficiency exchange 2013: Good things go better together
6/12/2013 12:00 AM
Like chocolate and peanut butter, BPA and NEEA go better together. Pictured here are NEEA’s Executive Director Susan Stratton and BPA’s Vice President of Energy Efficiency Richard Génecé.
Nearly 500 people gathered May 14-16 to share information at the Efficiency Exchange NW Conference hosted by BPA and Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance. The event combined two conferences from previous years – NEEA’s Efficiency Connections NW and BPA’s Energy Efficiency Utility Summit – into one space for more networking, information sharing and, of course, energy efficiency.
“I am very proud of this partnership between BPA and NEEA. Acting together we are creating the preeminent energy efficiency forum in the Northwest,” said Richard Génecé, BPA’s vice president of Energy Efficiency. “By bringing together public power with their counterparts from investor-owned utilities and the implementers and contractors throughout the region we are supporting the exchange of ideas and best practices and can continue our region’s legacy of leadership in energy efficiency.”
More than 20 topics were covered in breakout sessions over the two and a half day conference at the DoubleTree Hilton hotel in Portland, Ore. Staff from electric utilities throughout the Northwest as well as other industry groups and efficiency researchers attended to exchange energy efficiency experiences and to learn about the latest energy-saving innovations and programs.
The keynote speech by Professor Jeremy Bailenson was a unique experience for attendees. Bailenson is the founding director of Stanford University's Virtual Human Interaction Lab and specializes in human interaction in virtual environments. His speech focused on immersive virtual reality and how it could be used to affect behavioral efficiency programs. Though his speech was fantastic, the highlight came afterwards when attendees were offered a chance to don VR goggles to experience an immersive virtual environment themselves.
BPA’s partnership with NEEA for this conference reinforces our joint commitment to efficiency for the region, and was very well received by the attendees. Utility staff who previously had to make a hard choice as to which conference to attend are no longer required to miss out on a valuable learning opportunity. “I could never attend the NEEA conference due to time out of office, so this way I can experience all of it,” said Sarah Rossi from West Oregon Electric Cooperative.
BPA staff participated in several panels and sessions throughout the conference. Lee Hall from the Smart Grid group presented at a breakout session about demand response on Tuesday afternoon.
Lee Hall from BPA’s Smart Grid group leads a breakout session about demand response at the Efficiency Exchange NW Conference, held May 14-16 in Portland.
Many other Energy Efficiency team members helped make this conference a success. The event offered virtual sessions for most topics. Participants could log on, listen in and ask questions of the panelists.
In case you missed it, back in February BPA and NEEA used a clever video to announce the combination of their two conferences.
The video, which says “Like Peanut Butter and Chocolate NEEA and BPA
are just better together,” was a mild Web sensation.
Watch the fun video.
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