Friday, March 16, 2012

Denver Law Representatives Attend Vail Global Energy Forum and Learn About Important Energy Trends

DU's Denver Law and Daniels College of Business were well represented during the recent Vail Global Energy Forum held in Beaver Creek, Colorado.

The Vail Valley Foundation, in conjunction with Stanford University's Precourt Institute for Energy (PIE) and Precourt Energy Efficiency Center, (PEEC), hosted the event to address the world’s energy challenges and solutions.

“The VGEF is dedicated to the search for sustainable solutions to one of the most pressing issues of our times – how to produce enough clean, cost-efficient energy from reliable sources to power our global economy while we bridge the transition to breakthrough renewable energy solutions of the future,” said Vail resident, Jay Precourt, who endowed PIE at Stanford University.

The VGEF examined the combined challenges of energy supply, energy security and the impacts of energy use that will shape the energy transitions underway now and in the decades to come.

Gov. John Hickenlooper, George P. Shultz, former U.S. Secretary of State, Secretary of the Treasury and Secretary of Labor and now Distinguished Fellow of Stanford's Hoover Institution, and U.S. Senator Mark Udall of Colorado delivered remarks at the event.

Dr. Dan Arvizu, Director of National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) for the U.S. Department of Energy — the primary laboratory for the study of energy efficiencies and renewable energy technologies in Golden, CO, encouraged students to consider fields in the energy sector. “The next generation of our workforce should strongly look for energy as a stimulating and rewarding career,” said Dr. Arvizu.

DU students Tyler Geisert, Veronica Morelli, Nadia B. Ahmad, William Saunders, Lindsey Reece, and Andy Reger were awarded scholarships to attend the program.

“The program was an incredible fusion of science, technology, law, and policy,” said Ms.Ahmad. “I was amazed to see the cutting edge work being done in the energy sector. Yet I was most impressed to see policymakers from varying points of view advocating for sustainable development and increased innovation.”

Morelli added, “It was very interesting to learn about the US current efforts to reduce the dependency to oil and transition to natural gas, which responds not only to energy security concerns, but also to the need to supply the country’s energy needs with a cleaner and environmentally friendly fuel”. She added that, “As an international student, it is very interesting to see that many countries of the world are currently conducting efforts to transition to cleaner energies as a response to a common concern: global warming”.

Other speakers included Jeffrey Ball, former Environment Editor of The Wall Street Journal; Tom Petrie, Vice Chairman, Bank of America Merrill Lynch; Dr. Ernest Moniz, Director of the Energy Initiative at MIT; Dr. Burton Richter, Nobel Laureate in Physics, Senior Fellow at Stanford; and Dr. Nathan Lewis, Director, Lewis Research Group at Caltech. Additional speakers and panelists included Gregory Ebel, President and CEO of Spectra Energy; Tom Siebel, Founder of Siebel Systems; Bert Valdman, Senior Vice President, Strategic Planning, Edison International; Dr. Franklin M. Orr, Director, Precourt Institute for Energy at Stanford; Dr. James Sweeney, Director, Precourt Energy Efficiency Center at Stanford; Dr. Sally Benson, Director, Global Climate and Energy Project, at Stanford.

"The Vail Global Energy Forum was truly a remarkable opportunity to hear some of the world's most respected energy experts discussing opportunities for global energy innovation, Associate Adminstrative Director for the Environmental and Natural Resources Law Graduate Program Lucy Daberkow remarked.

Photo caption (from left): Lucy Daberkow, Nadia Ahmad, Prof. KK DuVivier.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Denver Law Environmental Program Director Don Smith Presents Lecture at Metro State College of Denver

Don Smith, Denver Law Lecturer and Director of the Environmental and Natural Resources Law (ENRL) program, recently presented a lecture comparing the legal systems of the European Union and United States at Metro State College of Denver.

Professor Susana Vela, who teaches American Government at Metro State, kindly extended the invitation to Professor Smith as part of her curriculum on comparative legal systems.

Professor Smith said, "There are three major economic powers in today's world: China, the EU, and the US. Understanding how the EU works can be useful in many ways to students who study about the US." In particular, he said the EU system of governance provides students a "unique and innovative model" by which to judge other governance systems.

The EU is the successor to the European Economic Community, which was founded in 1957. The EU governs most European issues related to matters such as trade in goods and services, free movement of people, and environmental issues. The EU has 27 members, which are located in western and central Europe.

ENRL Associate Administrative Director Lucy Daberkow was a special guest as well. "Strenghtening the ties between Metro State and Denver Law is a key element in our efforts to recruit top-notch candidates locally," Ms. Daberkow said. "We look forward to a continued collaboration with our colleagues at Metro State College."

Mr. Smith said, "I greatly appreciated Professor Vela's offer to speak to her class. I hope this is the first of many cooperative ventures between Denver Law and Metro State."

Editor's note: Photos (from top): Lucy Daberkow, Don Smith, Susana Vela; Don Smith; Susana Vela, Don Smith.