Program News | Posted Mar 30, 2008

By ESI Resource Manager, Max Leiserson

This past Saturday, March 29th, North Haven State Representative Steve Fontana moderated the Tufts Energy Conference panel discussing “Successful Maneuvering Within Policy Frameworks,” at Tufts University in Medford, MA. Fontana, the co-chairman of the Connecticut General Assembly’s Energy & Technology Committee, offered a brief introduction to the panel by examining the role of government in the energy market.

“Government is inevitably short-sighted,” Fontana explained. “Officials are always dealing with immediate issues, which makes it difficult to plan for the future.”

Fontana was joined on the panel by four distinguished guests: Michael Jacobs, VP of Transmission, UPC Wind; Joe Mead, World Energy Alternatives; Berl Hartman, Founder of Environmental Entrepreneurs and Public Policy Chair of the New England Clean Energy Council; and Fred Zalcman, Director of Regulatory Affairs of Eastern States at SunEdison. Each discussed their own experience in maneuvering within policy. A common thread in each presentation was the challenges state by state and country by country energy policies present to entrepreneurs, because states’ and countries’ policies can differ dramatically. The current discrepancies between policies substantially reduce the efficiency of the current energy market.

“It’s up to all of us to lobby and advocate to make the right thing happen,” Berl Hartman stipulated. She added later, “When the policy framework is right, good things happen.”

The Tufts Energy Conference is an annual event in its 3rd year at Tufts University. The conference featured a variety of experts in different fields of energy who discussed contemporary energy issues. This year, the conference was sponsored by the Tufts Energy Security Initiative (ESI), the Young Entrepreneurs at Tufts, and the Fletcher Energy Consortium.

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