Following the groundwork laying Session 1 on the Policy and Program Landscape of renewable energy in BC we will move to the exciting Session 2 of Energy Connections 2017, Renewable Energy Success Stories throughout the province.
There are hundreds, if not thousands, of renewable energy projects of various sizes that haven’t had their time in the sun. Session 2 will allow citizens and community leaders of small towns and First Nations across BC to showcase their projects, and share experiences from the journey to renewable empowerment. The session will focus on their inspiring stories, as well as the renewable energy businesses and organizations that made these journeys possible, bringing the dream of self-sufficiency to life. BCSEA is honored to have four distinguished and diverse speakers presenting their inspiring stories and projects throughout this vastly anticipated session.
Moderating the esteemed panel of speakers in Session 2 will be none other than SFU Center for Dialogue’s Betsy Agar. Betsy is a Research Manager and Dialogue Convenor for Renewable Cities, a global program supporting cities around the world throughout their journey to 100% renewable energy. She has been a research manager, editor, and member of Carbon Talks’ team since 2013. She holds a Professional Engineers of Ontario license and a Masters in Applied Science (McMaster). Betsy has invaluable years of experience in community engagement and sustainability projects; she will undoubtedly excel as an enthusiastic and engaging moderator for Session 2.
Our first speaker is Ian Gartshore, President of Shore Energy Solutions. Ian is a social entrepreneur and small business owner passionate about energy conservation and efficiency. He has initiated several non-profit organisations including the Nanaimo Carshare Co-op and Energy Solutions for Vancouver Island, a non-profit organization that has a mandate to promote energy efficiency and renewable energy.
Our second speaker will be Scot Merriam, Principal Engineer with SRM Projects. He has numerous years worth of experience in renewable energy projects of various types and scale. Scot is also a volunteer with Energy Solutions for Vancouver Island, spearheading their solar PV demonstration program, and a past director and member of Marine Renewables Canada. Scot is passionate about applying his wealth of knowledge to clean energy projects, with an emphasis on community wellness and economic development.
Third up, we have Jeff Weston, CEO and President of Thermenex Inc. His company is based on a worldwide patented thermal energy exchange system targeting zero thermal waste. This technology has been extremely successful and has resulted in the most energy efficient buildings with the fewest GHG emissions in their class, including 6 UBC projects. We certainly look forward to hearing more from Jeff’s astonishing renewable project achievements.
The fourth and last (but certainly not least) speaker will be Andrew Moore, Project Director with the T’Sou-ke First Nation. Andrew has 30 years of experience in community development working with the private sector, grass roots organizations, and different levels of governments throughout Europe, Africa, and North America. He works on the ‘front line’ where lasting change can take place quickly. He is usually embedded in the communities he works with; inner city deprived areas of London UK, squatter camps on the outskirts of Johannesburg, S. Africa. For the last 10 years he has been working on a First Nation Reserve employed by the T’Sou-ke Nation on Vancouver Island transforming its community vision into a reality.
Ultimately, Session Two will serve to inspire, and demonstrate that renewable energy isn’t a dream of the future – it’s happening now. People are taking the leap to the sustainable way of living, and are reaping the benefits of clean energy. Session Two will show you that it’s not only possible, but profitable to take that next step in your home and community.
Interested? Take a look at the Energy Connections 2017 website for more details on what's in store for the day!
Marco Sanelli is a 4th year student in the Natural Resource Conservation major in the Faculty of Forestry at UBC.