Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Communicating a Clear Direction for Energy

On Monday, I attended the EnergyBiz Leadership Forum in DC. The forum focused on how today's developments —stimulus spending, new policies and groundbreaking technologies — are shaping the way will produce and use energy.

The need for a clear and open national energy policy was a major theme woven throughout this conference. Many experts believe the US can lead the global clean energy race if regulatory and legislative leaders in Washington can agree and begin to provide clear direction.

John Gilleland of TerraPower was a featured panelist in the Nuclear and Coal—Will the Next Generation Ever Get Built session, which looked at coal, nuclear and low carbon alternatives.

All of the panelists for this session supported implementing a broad energy portfolio. For me, their comments solidified the notion that “we need it all” to meet our national energy goals. Gilleland said that nature has imposed a deadline and it is imperative that we all work together.

The message that it will take all forms of energy to meet our future needs is a theme that we often hear from our clients. This is an especially important communications message for producers of traditional sources of energy like fossil fuel and nuclear power who some would suggest can completely be replaced with renewable power options.

Our role as energy communicators is now more important than ever if we hope to give the general public a “clear vision” of what is needed to address energy and environmental concerns. We must communicate the benefits of all forms of energy -- from renewable wind and solar to nuclear power and conventional oil and gas – to help Americans form educated opinions about the best mix of energy to meet the nation’s growing demand.

- Potomac Communications Group

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