By - Jon Brown

Best Practices in Public Engagement for Energy Projects
October 8-9, 2019 | Waltham, MA

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Overview

Energy infrastructure projects can be characterized by high perceived risk and low stakeholder trust.  A balance must be struck between the need for additional energy development and landowner priorities, environmental impact considerations and regulatory compliance.

A comprehensive strategic public engagement process is a key tenet to the success of any energy project.  Whether it be electric or gas transmission, battery storage, offshore wind or a solar project, all stakeholders must be engaged throughout the process, using a wide variety of communication and engagement techniques that are tailored to the needs of each stakeholder.  But how do you tackle this daunting challenge?

As an attendee of this EUCI conference hosted by National Grid, you’ll hear the results and lessons learned from leading electric and natural gas professionals with a highlight on the challenges facing Northeast and Eastern based energy providers.  You’ll learn the strategies and methods they use to positively engage stakeholders, build trust with the community, and overcome project obstacles.  You’ll leave this conference with practical tools and techniques that can be immediately implemented within your own organization to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of your public engagement program.

Learning Outcomes

  • Determine what are the keys to effectively managing communications through a crisis
  • List the methods Dominion Energy is exploring and employing for improving construction communications
  • Review how a natural gas system works while understanding how sustainable growth can be handled to meet growing demand and the aging infrastructures of gas systems
  • Engage with this interactive panel discussion on how utility companies are internally structured
  • Discuss National Grid’s Intel Team’s role and the tools they use to assist the Stakeholder Relations department
  • Engage with this interactive panel discussion on success stories and best practices when working with the opposition
  • Review how ComEd minimized disruptive site access and helped to calm stakeholder’s fears of environmental disturbance
  • Expand on Avangrid’s outreach and permitting process and the resulting outcome for four separate battery storage installations
  • Decide if how Anbaric is working with communities on the transformation of a former coal generation site to a center for offshore wind development is successful
  • Address engagement techniques Tampa Electric used for their solar projects
  • List some of the strategies for developing an effective message to stakeholders on their EMF concerns
  • Review how technology is changing the way to manage and engage with the public
  • Engage in this interactive panel discussion on the natural gas market, development and stakeholder considerations

Credits

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EUCI has been accredited as an Authorized Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET).  In obtaining this accreditation, EUCI has demonstrated that it  complies with the ANSI/IACET Standard which is recognized internationally as a standard of good practice. As a result of their Authorized Provider status, EUCI is authorized to offer IACET CEUs for its programs that qualify under the ANSI/IACET Standard.

EUCI is authorized by IACET to offer 1.2 CEUs for this event.

 

Instructional Methods

Case studies, PowerPoint presentations and group discussion will be used in this event.

Requirements For Successful Completion Of Program

Participants must sign in/out each day and be in attendance for the entirety of the course to be eligible for continuing education credit.

Agenda

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

8:00 – 8:30 a.m. :: Registration and Continental Breakfast

8:30 – 8:40 a.m. :: Introductions


8:40 – 9:00 a.m. :: Welcome and Opening Remarks

Clara Giustino, Vice President, Project Development, National Grid


9:00 – 9:45 a.m. :: Effective Communication During a Crisis

All organizations are susceptible to crises. Utilities and energy companies are no different, and in fact might be more prone due to severe weather, the complexity and vulnerabilities of transmission and distribution systems, and the ubiquitous nature of electricity – people expect it to be reliable and depend on it for running households, businesses, and emergency services. Research and experience show us that organizational leadership and a consciousness of crises potential are key to effectively managing communications through a crises while maintaining customer and political loyalty with as little downside risk to the organization as possible.

Paul A. DeCotis, Senior Director, Head East Coast Energy & Utilities Practice, West Monroe Partners

9:45 – 10:15 a.m. :: Networking Break


10:15 – 11:00 a.m. :: The Timber-Matted Road to Successful Landowner Construction Communications

Dominion Energy’s Electric Transmission Communications Team mission is to “build trust, credibility and integrity among interested stakeholders to positively affect Dominion Energy’s legacy in the community and to demonstrate that the company has the public’s best interest in mind.” On large (and small) infrastructure projects, the most interested stakeholders are often those on whose property we are working. Proactive, transparent communications before, during, and after the construction process are vital to a project’s success and the company’s legacy in the community – collaborating with landowners during this process allows us to build lasting trust and credibility with the community. While traditional communication methods such as mailers, webpage updates, and community meetings serve as the foundation for a successful construction campaign, the Electric Transmission Communications Team is exploring and employing new methods of improving construction communications by utilizing technology like interactive web portals and video production while also using lessons learned from completed projects to inform our most standard practices.

Gregory Mathe, Manager – Electric Transmission Communications, Dominion Energy


11:00 – 11:45 a.m. :: Sustainable Growth of Natural Gas Systems 

This presentation will dive into the process of natural gas from fracking through to the transmission of it into distribution systems. Discussion on sustainable growth as more lines are needed due to growing demand and aging infrastructure will assist the communications individuals in attendance with their overall understanding of gas systems.

Rick Murphy, Managing Director of Sustainable Growth, American Gas Association

11:45 a.m. – 12:45 p.m. :: Group Luncheon


12:45 – 2:00 p.m. :: Panel Discussion on How Organizations are Structured

Utility companies are vast organizations with many moving parts and departments. This interactive panel discussion will take an inside look on how utility companies are internally structured.

Gregory Mathe, Manager – Electric Transmission Communications, Dominion Energy

Kyle Chabot, Manager, New England, Stakeholder Relations, US Capital Delivery, National Grid

Alec O’Meara, Media Relations Manager, Unitil

Tama Davis, Project Outreach Manager of Transmission, American Electric Power


2:00 – 2:45 p.m. :: Security Support for Public Facing Lines of Business

This presentation will provide an overview of the threat and the Intel Team that falls under the Security department at National Grid. You will learn what the Intel Team does, the tools they use, their convergence with Cyber Security to provide a holistic intel and threat approach, and how National Grid has utilized this team to assist the Stakeholder Relations department.

Matthew Donahue, Lead Analyst Security Services, National Grid

2:45 – 3:15 p.m. :: Networking Break


3:15 – 4:45 p.m. :: Panel Discussion: Dealing with Opposition

Sit-ins, rallies, negative media stories, grassroots activists and spreading misinformation online. Opposition groups are more organized, connected and vocal than ever before. This interactive panel discussion will highlight success stories and best practices when working with the opposition.  

Matthew Donahue, Lead Analyst Security Services, National Grid

Kevin Cushing, Manager, New York, Stakeholder Relations, US Capital Delivery, National Grid

Sophia O’Keefe, Manager, Transmission Engagement, Duke Energy

Michael Ahern, Director, Power Systems, WPI Corporate and Professional Education

Todd Burns, Director of Project Outreach and Right-of-Way, AEP Transmission

Julie Mills Taylor, Senior Communications Specialist, Dominion Energy


Wednesday, October 9, 2019

8:00 – 8:30 a.m. :: Continental Breakfast


8:30 – 9:15 a.m. :: Minimize Ground Impact to Maximize Respect

Utilizing minimally disruptive site access solutions like temporary access roads will help calm stakeholder’s fear of environmental disturbance from heavy construction equipment. We will discuss project examples where this technique has made landowners respectful of the utility’s efforts to conserve their land with minimal impact.

(TBD), ComEd

John Capodice, Executive Vice President, Sterling


9:15 – 10:00 a.m. :: Outreach, Permitting and Public Acceptance of Battery Storage Systems

An Order from the NY PSC was issued, mandating that each Avangrid Operating Company implement two Battery Storage Projects for demonstration purposes.  We will provide an overview of the Outreach and Permitting process and outcome for four separate battery storage installations in the State of New York.

Mark Kirschbaum, Manager, Capital and Customer Projects, Avangrid Networks

Samantha Marone, Manager, Public Outreach, Avangrid Networks

10:00 – 10:20 a.m. :: Networking Break


10:20 – 11:05 a.m. :: Anbaric’s Renewable Energy Center at Brayton Point

Learn how Anbaric is working with the town of Somerset and the Brayton Point Commerce Center on the transformation of this former coal generation site to a center for offshore wind development.  Using the most advanced high voltage direct current (HVDC) technology to bring wind energy to shore, Anbaric will optimize use of the former coal site with less disruption to the environment.

Stephen Conant, Partner-Project Manager, Anbaric Development Partners


11:05 – 11:50 a.m. :: Public Engagement/Outreach for Solar Projects

This presentation will address public engagement/outreach techniques for renewable energy projects and share some lessons learned from Tampa Electric’s construction of multiple solar projects in the 74.5 MW range.

  1. During Land Development
  2. During Permitting 
  3. During Construction 
  4. Post Construction 

Arlee Jones PgMP®, EVMP®, Project Manager II – ED Project Management, Tampa Electric

11:50 a.m. – 12:50 p.m. :: Group Luncheon


12:50 – 1:30 p.m. :: How to Talk with Stakeholders About EMF and Health Concerns

Effective communication with stakeholders plays a key role in a project’s overall success. The topic of EMF can be challenging to address but earning stakeholder support requires a willingness to engage openly and with scientific accuracy. In this presentation, we will share some of the EMF concerns frequently raised by stakeholders and discuss strategies for developing an effective message. We will also provide a brief overview of the current status of EMF research and identify credible sources of information on EMF exposure and health.

Pamela Dopart, Ph.D., CIH, Senior Scientist, Exponent


1:30 – 2:10 p.m. :: AI/Machine Learning and How it is Changing the Way to Manage and Engage the Public

Using technology to improve the management of and the process for your engagement is becoming necessary in today’s project outreach. Mapping automation, predicting public opposition, working with big data, Right-of-Way encroachment detection and more will be covered in this presentation.

Jason Pfaff, Director of Applied Technology/Manager of Innovation, POWER Engineers, Inc.

Shawn Jackson, Project Manager, POWER Engineers, Inc.

2:10 – 2:30 p.m. :: Networking Break


2:30 – 3:30 p.m. :: Gas Infrastructure: Market, Development and Stakeholder Considerations in Light of Recent Alternative Energy Initiatives

Inability to site and develop gas infrastructure projects in the Northeast has led utilities to cease taking on new customers and limiting services. In this interactive panel discussion, explore the causes for siting challenges, implications for stakeholder management and discuss possible alternatives. We will also consider market, communications messaging considerations for gas providers in light of policies supporting the move to alternative energy infrastructure.

Rick Murphy, Managing Director of Sustainable Growth, American Gas Association (invited)

Thomas Kiley, President and CEO, Northeast Gas Association

Andrea Chambers, Esq., Partner, DLA Piper

3:30 p.m. :: Conference Adjourns

Speakers

Michael Ahern, Director, Power Systems, WPI Corporate and Professional Education

Todd Burns, Director of Project Outreach and Right-of-Way, AEP Transmission

John Capodice, Executive Vice President, Sterling

Kyle Chabot, Manager, New England, Stakeholder Relations, US Capital Delivery, National Grid

Andrea Chambers, Esq., Partner, DLA Piper

Stephen Conant, Partner-Project Manager, Anbaric Development Partners

Kevin Cushing, Manager, New York, Stakeholder Relations, US Capital Delivery, National Grid

Tama Davis, Project Outreach Manager of Transmission, American Electric Power

Paul A. DeCotis, Senior Director, Head East Coast Energy & Utilities Practice, West Monroe Partners

Matthew Donahue, Lead Analyst Security Services, National Grid

Pamela Dopart, Ph.D., CIH, Senior Scientist, Exponent

Shawn Jackson, Project Manager, POWER Engineers, Inc.

Arlee Jones PgMP®, EVMP®, Project Manager II – ED Project Management, Tampa Electric

Thomas Kiley, President and CEO, Northeast Gas Association

Mark Kirschbaum, Manager, Capital and Customer Projects, Avangrid Networks

Samantha Marone, Manager, Public Outreach, Avangrid Networks

Gregory Mathe, Manager – Electric Transmission Communications, Dominion Energy

Rick Murphy, Managing Director of Sustainable Growth, American Gas Association (invited)

Sophia O’Keefe, Manager, Transmission Engagement, Duke Energy

Alec O’Meara, Media Relations Manager, Unitil

Jason Pfaff, Director of Applied Technology/Manager of Innovation, POWER Engineers, Inc.

Julie Mills Taylor, Senior Communications Specialist, Dominion Energy

Location

Forefront Center for Meetings & Conferences

404 Wyman Street

Waltham, MA 02451

 

Nearby Hotels

The Westin Waltham Boston
70 Third Avenue
Waltham, Massachusetts 02451 
781-290-5600
Select Special Rates drop down menu
Use Corporate Rate Code: NTG for disc. rate of $229
1.2 miles away

Embassy Suites by Hilton Boston Waltham
550 Winter St.
Waltham, MA 02451
781-890-6767
1.3 miles away

Hilton Garden Inn Boston/Waltham
450 Totten Pond Rd.
Waltham, Massachusetts 02451
781-890-0100
1.1 miles away

Courtyard by Marriott Boston Waltham
387 Winter St.
Waltham, MA 02451
 781-419-0900
1.0 miles away

Register

Please Note: Confirmed speakers do not need to register and are encouraged to participate in all sessions of the event. If you are a speaker and have any questions please contact our offices at 1.303.770.8800

EventEarly Bird Before
Friday, September 20, 2019
Standard RateAttendees
Best Practices in Public Engagement for Energy ProjectsUS $ 1295.00 US $ 1395.00

*Please note: all attendees of the conference will receive a link to downlaod all presentations that are made available by the presenters. If you cannot attend the conference but would still like a copy of these materials, please consider purchasing the proceedings package listed below

I cannot attend but would like a copy of the proceedings

Proceedings package US $ 395.00

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Cancellation Policy

Your registration may be transferred to a member of your organization up to 24 hours in advance of the event. Cancellations must be received on or before September 06, 2019 in order to be refunded and will be subject to a US $195.00 processing fee per registrant. No refunds will be made after this date. Cancellations received after this date will create a credit of the tuition (less processing fee) good toward any other EUCI event. This credit will be good for six months from the cancellation date. In the event of non-attendance, all registration fees will be forfeited. In case of conference cancellation, EUCIs liability is limited to refund of the event registration fee only. For more information regarding administrative policies, such as complaints and refunds, please contact our offices at 303-770-8800

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