Published: April 28, 2006

Yesterday,Colorado Law’s Energy & Environmental Security Initiative and the CU Environmental Center held the third CU Sustainable Energy Forum--a series designed to showcase the sustainable energy research and projects of CU faculty, staff and students. As the final forum of the academic year, the event focused on some of the key economic issues and opportunities that inform and influence energy choices. The four panelists for the forum discussed the economic reality in which energy choices are made, and offered real world solutions for improving our ability to make optimal choices in the face of that reality. Moderated by Dr. Lakshman Guruswamy, EESI Director and Nicholas Doman Professor of International Environmental Law, the Forum featured the following panelists: Paul C. Caldara, Manager of Utilities Distribution at CU-Boulder; Stephen R. Lawrence, Associate Professor of Operations Management in the Leeds School of Business; Jane Pater, a graduate student in her second year as a dual degree MBA/MS in Environmental Studies student with a focus on energy; and Suzanne Tegen, a researcher at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and a Ph.D. candidate in CU-Boulder's Environmental Studies program specializing in energy policy. For information on upcoming CU Sustainable Energy forums, please send an email to Additional information on past CU Sustainable Energy Forums is available on EESI website.The presentations of each panelists are available for download below in PDF format: Paul C. Caldara, Welcome to the Real World (PDF 288kb) Stephen R. Lawrence, Entrepreneurship & Sustainable Energy (PDF 626kb) Jane Pater, Framework for the Total Value Proposition of Clean Energy Technologies (PDF 397kb) Suzanne Tegen, Statewide Economic Impacts from New Electricity Generation (PDF 384kb) More on the Speakers and Presentations PAUL C. CALDARA, MANAGER OF UTILITIES DISTRIBUTION at CU-Boulder, discussed the complexities of operating a cogeneration plant and the impact of gas prices on the economics of plant operation. Paul is responsible for the safe and reliable operation of CU-Boulder's electric distribution system, and oversees plant optimization calculations for the most efficient operation of the power house, rate analysis, and contract negotiations. PROFESSOR STEPHEN R. LAWRENCE discussed specific types of entrepreneurial opportunities open to individuals and investors in the sustainable energy space. In addition to yielding financial rewards for individual investors, the exploitation of such opportunities is critical to the rapid commercial diffusion of sustainable energy technologies. Stephen is an Associate Professor of Operations Management in the Leeds School of Business at CU-Boulder, where he teaches courses in the assessment of sustainable energy technologies, supply chain management, technology management, and entrepreneurship. GRADUATE STUDENT JANE PATER gave a presentation entitled, "A Framework for Valuing Clean Energy Technologies." Conventional valuation techniques fail to include many of the financial advantages of clean energy technologies, including risk management, emissions reductions and policy incentives. Jane presented an analytical framework that provides a method for quantifying those values and incorporating them into a product valuation. This framework may be used to create comparable value propositions for clean energy technologies supporting investment decisions, project siting and marketing strategies. Jane is in her second year as a dual degree MBA/MS in Environmental Studies student with a focus on energy. She interned at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) during the summer of 2005, which is where she completed the research that will serve as the basis for this presentation. GRADUATE STUDENT SUZANNE TEGEN gave a presentation entitled, "Statewide Economic Impacts from New Electricity Generation: Comparing Coal, Natural Gas and Wind plants." Suzanne introduced a new methodology for calculating the direct economic benefits to a state from the construction and operation of new power plants. This methodology traces the dollar flow into and out of the state from construction, operation, maintenance, fuel, landowner revenues, financing and property taxes. Suzanne works at NREL and studies economic development within their Wind Powering America program. She is also a PhD candidate in CU Boulder's Environmental Studies program researching energy policy. Suzanne has a Master's degree from CU and a Bachelor's degree in German Literature from the University of Wisconsin Madison. About the Sponsors As an interdisciplinary center at the University of Colorado School of Law, the mission of EESI is to facilitate the attainment of a global sustainable energy future through the innovative use of laws, policies and technology solutions. To that end, EESI serves as an enabling environment for teaching and research into the impact of laws and policies on the scientific, engineering, sociopolitical, and commercial dimensions of sustainable energy. To learn more about EESI, visit the EESI Home Page.Established in 1970, the CU Environmental Center educates, activates, and inspires the campus community to understand and engage in local and global environmental issues. For additional information on the CU Environmental Center, please visit the CU Environmental Center Home Page.