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Posted by Industry News on Jun 19, 2013

Session hosted by CPS Energy is second in a series that brings together utility execs, advanced energy CEOs, and state regulators to accelerate innovation

San Antonio, TX – Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Industrial Performance Center (MIT-IPC) today held the second in a series of regional forums to bring together leaders of electric utilities and advanced energy businesses to discuss how new technologies and services can be adopted more rapidly in the electric power sector.

The closed-door, invitation-only events will culminate in an action plan for achieving tangible results throughout the United States focusing on:

  1. Helping advanced energy companies understand the taxonomy of utility needs; 

  2. Aligning business models and incentives so utility companies can embrace innovation that creates value for diverse stakeholders; and

  3. Assisting regulators in encouraging innovation in the electric power sector.

The first Utility and Advanced Energy Executive Forum took place March 6, 2013 at MIT. Attendees at that forum included top executives from PSEG Energy Holdings, Northeast Utilities, CPS Energy, NRG Energy, NextEra Energy Resources, CLEAResult, EnerNOC, Gridco Systems, SustainX, Viridity Energy, and California ISO.

Hosted by CPS Energy, the nation’s largest municipal electric and gas utility, this second Forum in the series focused on the unique market and regulatory structure of electric power in Texas, its particular challenges, and what other regions can learn from Texas’s experience in competitive power generation, wide-scale integration of wind energy, and other innovations. This session included many participants from the first Forum, plus executives from OGE Energy, First Solar, Silver Spring Networks, Landis+Gyr, Green Energy Corp., C3 Energy, and the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT).

The goal of these initial Forums has been to convene key stakeholders from utility companies, advanced energy companies and regulatory agencies to identify new business models and regulatory frameworks that can help accelerate advanced energy growth within the power sector. Upcoming Forums, which will take place elsewhere around the country, will begin to refine the business model and regulatory frameworks needed, and identify public utility commissions and utility companies that might be interested in a pilot to test some of the concepts developed.

The Utility and Advanced Energy Executive Forum collaboration is led by AEE co-founder and co-chair Hemant Taneja, a managing director of General Catalyst Partners; and Richard Lester, Japan Steel Industry Professor and head of MIT’s Nuclear Science and Engineering Department, and Faculty Director of the MIT-IPC.

“Advanced Energy Economy is proud to join with the IPC to draw attention to the potential for transforming America’s electric power system and its economy through advanced energy technologies,” said Hemant Taneja. “Advanced energy companies have much to offer electric utilities and their customers. But that value can only be realized if these companies and the utilities get to know each other better, and find ways to align their business interests. That’s what these Forums are all about. ”

“Accelerating the take-up of new technologies in the electric power sector may well be the most important innovation challenge this nation faces,” said Richard Lester.  “Our goal for these forums is to catalyze new thinking, new actions, and new policies for energy innovation, enabling faster growth for local and regional economies, and – crucially – an effective response to the challenge of climate change.” 

“I am proud to have CPS Energy host these business leaders for a critically necessary discussion about the future of our industry," said Doyle Beneby, President and CEO, CPS Energy. “We are pleased to share CPS Energy’s strategy of diversification and risk management with the group, which includes our commitment to decrease the carbon intensity of our generation fleet by retiring coal and adding natural gas and utility scale solar and our aggressive energy efficiency programs.”


About Advanced Energy Economy  

Advanced Energy Economy is a national association of businesses and business leaders who are making the global energy system more secure, clean, and affordable. AEE’s mission is to transform public policy to enable the rapid growth of advanced energy companies. For more information, please visit

About the MIT Industrial Performance Center

The IPC is dedicated to the study of innovation, productivity and competitiveness in the U.S. and around the world. The Center specializes in bringing together multidisciplinary teams of researchers in engineering, science, management and the social sciences to carry out research on industrial development and transformation, national and regional economic growth and competitiveness, and innovation performance.  The IPC’s participation in this initiative is sponsored by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation.

About CPS Energy

CPS Energy is the nation's largest municipally owned natural gas and electric company, providing service to approximately 741,000 electric and 331,000 natural gas customers in the Greater San Antonio area. The company offers the lowest rates among the top 20 largest U.S. cities, while ranking number one in wind-energy capacity among municipally owned systems and number one in Texas for solar generation. 

Contact:         Jim Hock, Advanced Energy Economy

                        (202) 494-8132

                        Elisabeth Beck Reynolds, MIT Industrial Performance Center

                        (617) 452-2054

                        Tracy Idell Hamilton, CPS Energy

                        (210) 328-9054

Topics: Press Releases