Fourth Water Technology Conference, "Water And Energy," Scheduled for January 30 at University of La Verne

LA VERNE, Calif., Dec. 18, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The people of Southern California have long known the importance of not only having water but moving water. As an example of the interconnection between water and energy, the Metropolitan Water District, charged with pushing the precious resource from the Colorado River, Owens Valley and the Sacramento Bay to most of Southern California, has become the largest consumer of electricity in the state. Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. has -created "Water and Energy Task Force" citing the importance of these issues.

On January 30, The University of La Verne's Fourth Annual Water Technology Conference, "Water and Energy," will gather experts and dignitaries from national, state and local levels to examine and discuss how research and technology has affected water delivery and its potential impact on the future. A series of panel discussions are scheduled.   The keynote address will be given by Cynthia Truelove, a professor in water and energy at Stanford University, who has served on the water/energy planning staff at the California Public Utilities Commission. 

University of La Verne President Dr. Devorah Lieberman and Provost Dr. T. Gregory Dewey will introduce and open the conference, and briefly speak about the commitment of the University to water issues in the industry-technology-energy nexus.

The conference will then move to federal and state water and energy policy perspectives.  William Steele of the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation — which manages most federal water and energy projects that supply Southern California and other western states — will provide the federal commentary. The Hon. Fran Spivy-Weber, a member of the California State Water Resources Control Board, which oversees water supply and quality within the State of California, will address the State's perspective in water and energy.

The day's first panel discussion, "Water and Energy – the Core Research" moderated by Bill McDonnell of Metropolitan Water District, will examine recent water and energy research that could lead to energy use initiatives and program changes in the water industry.  The panel will include researchers who have helped thrust water and energy onto the national stage: Lorraine White, GEI Consultants (former water/energy staff of the California Energy Commission); Laurie Park, Water Energy Innovations (principal author of the Navigant Study on the water and energy nexus in California); and Bob Wilkinson, University of California, Santa Barbara (a member of the MWD Blue Ribbon Commission).

The Hon. Judy Chu, Congresswoman, 27th District, which includes La Verne, has been invited to address the water and energy perspectives of her office.  The Congresswoman, , serves on the House Judiciary Committee and is also the Ranking Member on the Subcommittee on Economic Growth, Tax and Capital Access Subcommittee of the House Small Business Committee.

Water and energy planning at the local level will be examined by Douglas Kent of Cal Poly Pomona, a nationally-known designer of minimal-water-use landscape projects for residential and commercial applications.

The afternoon programs will focus on perspectives of energy utilities and water engineering, including the emerging issue of electrical grid continuity in supply of water to our region.

The "Energy Utility Perspective on Water and Energy" panel, moderated by invited Assemblyman Christopher Holden, will include Southern California Edison's Mark Martinez, Program Manager, Demand Response; David Jacot, Water and Energy Program Manager for the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power; and Sempra Utilities' Frank Spasaro, a member of the Governor's "Water and Energy Task Force."

The "Water Agency and Engineering Perspectives" panel will be moderated by Ms. Vickere Murphy, director of the Green21 Program of California State Senator Carol Liu.  Green21 is a highly successful program to unify thought leaders in proactive initiatives for sustainability.  The panel speakers will be Cynthia Kurtz, Director for Pasadena of the MWD, and David De Jesus, MWD director for Three Valleys MWD.  Tim Worley, director of the American Water Works Association's California-Nevada Section, will address the water and energy issue from the perspective of the statewide water agencies.  Eric Putnam, electrical micro grid national team leader for Burns & McDonnell Engineers, will present research on electrical grid continuity for water agencies.

Congresswoman Grace Napolitano, Congresswoman, 32nd District, has been invited to be the closing speaker.  She serves on the House Natural Resources Committee, where she is the ranking member on the House Water and Power Committee. Congresswoman Napolitano spoke at the 2012 La Verne conference, and is nationally recognized for her work in water and energy issues.

Closing remarks will be made by T. Gregory Dewey, Provost, University of La Verne, who oversees the University's educational initiatives with the water and energy agencies, including the planned curriculum with the Association of California Water Agencies (ACWA).
Conference registration and sponsorship information is available at


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