Recently, we were invited to participate, along with other energy thought leaders, in a lively public forum on clean energy and energy policy by Ohio’s Energy Future Tour. We recognize that it’s important to not only focus on innovation and insights for our customers, but also contribute to the advancement of the energy economy around us. That’s why we were thrilled to have Tom Roberts, Nationwide Energy Partners’ Senior Director of Operations and Certified Energy Manager, join a four-member panel to share his passion for bringing energy solutions to the multifamily housing industry.
“I believe Ohio has an opportunity to lead by creating a market for energy service providers like Nationwide Energy Partners to compete in energy efficiency, with financial incentives and penalties designed to reward the energy profiles we need to better leverage our energy resources,” Roberts told the audience in his opening remarks.
The panel discussion was entitled: The Business of Clean Energy: Creating Jobs, Reducing Costs and Driving Innovation. Ohio’s Energy Future Tour is a statewide series of public forums to promote discussion among community leaders and residents about energy.
A common theme among the speakers and members of the audience was support for strong standards for renewable energy and energy efficiency to encourage investment and innovation as well as the creation and retention of jobs in the energy field.
Roberts spoke about the opportunities NEP sees in multifamily residential communities for more efficiency and renewable energy. For example, unused rooftops can be converted to solar collectors and microgrids can be created to reduce service interruptions.
“Most of the multifamily residential market is currently left out of energy efficiency initiatives because of the split incentive that exists between property owners and their tenants,” Roberts said. “At NEP we are trying to bridge that gap so both parties see benefits and a policy approach that acknowledges both sides of the equation. This provides equal incentives which will be key to ensuring innovation.”
Speaking alongside Roberts were Dennis Bollinger, Vice President of Business Development for Energy Developments Inc.; Mark Schuetz, Founder and President of Replex Plastics; and Matt White, General Counsel for Legislative and Regulatory Affairs for IGS Energy. Eric Thumma, Director of Policy and Regulatory Affairs for Iberdrola Renewables, moderated the panel.