One-stop Solar Energy Conference Set for Feb. 6

Conference at UC Riverside will address environmental, economic, scientific and policy implications of solar energy

Researchers stand with solar car Bourns College of Engineering Center for Environmental Research and Technology.

A car powered by solar energy built at UC Riverside's Bourns College of Engineering Center for Environmental Research and Technology, which will host a solar energy conference Feb. 6.

RIVERSIDE, Calif. (www.ucr.edu) — The University of California, Riverside will host a conference focused on solar energy in Inland Southern California on Thursday, Feb. 6 at its Bourns College of Engineering Center for Environmental Research and Technology.

This conference is designed for city leaders, planners, council members, businesses, utility companies and the public to learn about the latest technologies, public policy/regulations, economics and environmental/sustainability issues relating to solar energy.

“This conference is meant to be a one-stop for officials interested in the latest trends and developments in the solar energy industry,” said Alfredo Martinez-Morales, managing director of UC Riverside’s Southern California Research Initiative for Solar Energy.

The conference comes at time of unprecedented growth for solar energy installation in California, according to the California Solar Energy Industries Association. Its executive director, Bernadette Del Chiaro, will be speaking at the UC Riverside conference.

In 2013, California more than doubled its rooftop solar installations from 1,000 megawatts to more than 2,000 megawatts. To put this in perspective, it took California more than thirty years to build 1,000 megawatts of rooftop solar. When utility-scale solar projects are added in, California’s total solar power picture exceeds 4,000 megawatts.

The conference, called “Solar Energy in Inland Southern California: The Future is Now,” will take place from 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Feb. 6. It will cost $75 to attend. Students can attend for $10.

Among the scheduled speakers are: David Hochschild, commissioner, California Energy Commission; Roland Winston, director, UC Advanced Solar Technologies Institute and a professor, UC Merced; V. John White, executive director, Center for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Technologies; Ed Randolph, director, California Public Utilities Commission Energy Division; and Sarah Kurtz, photovoltaics reliability group manager, National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

The conference is co-sponsored SolarMax Technology, a solar energy company with headquarters in Riverside, and three UC Riverside entities: the Center for Sustainable Suburban Development, which is part of the School of Public Policy; the Center for Environmental Research and Technology; and the Southern California Research Initiative for Solar Energy. The latter two are part of the university’s Bourns College of Engineering.

“Being in one of the sunniest regions in the world, Inland Southern California is perfectly positioned to be focal point for the solar energy industry,” said Ronald Loveridge, director of UC Riverside’s Center for Sustainable Suburban Development and the former mayor of Riverside. “We are already seeing that, with the industry adding a significant number of jobs in the region in recent years.”

The Center for Environmental Research and Technology is located at 1084 Columbia Ave., about two miles north of the main campus. There is no cost to park and a permit is not needed.

For registration information visit: https://or.ucr.edu/event/register/register.aspx. For a map and directions to the Center for Environmental Research and Technology visit: http://www.cert.ucr.edu/contact.html.

Sponsorships are still available for the conference: http://cssd.ucr.edu/Conferences/PDFs/Sponsor%20Opportunities%20%28Revised%29.pdf

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