In December, Energetics Vice President Chris Kelley visited the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region to meet with energy leaders and to share Energetics’ experiences with smart grid implementation.
On December 8, Chris presented in Jeddah at Saudi Arabia Smart Grid 2015, the largest regional event on smart grid and sustainable energy. As a member of the International Experiences and Best Practices panel, he provided key insights on U.S. smart grid implementation to Saudi-based industry representatives and government and regulatory officials.
Chris then traveled to Dubai, United Arab Emirates, where he conducted a smart grid seminar on December 14 at the regional campus of the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT). In attendance were members of the mechanical engineering and electrical engineering faculty, students, faculty from Masdar Institute (an alternative energy and sustainability research institute in Abu Dhabi), and other industry representatives.
Chris was invited to the MENA region to discuss key findings of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Smart Grid Investment Grant (SGIG) program. SGIG was launched to jump-start implementation of smart grid technologies across the United States, accelerating grid modernization. The program comprised 99 projects that involved 225 utilities and other partnering organizations. Chris led a team of Energetics personnel in support of the $8 billion, five-year program. This effort led him and his staff across the nation visiting project teams, adding hands-on experience to a front-row holistic view of SGIG program results.
Chris shared insights and lessons learned from the SGIG program that are particularly relevant in the MENA region, including peak demand management through pricing programs, energy storage using thermal energy devices on commercial and government buildings, advanced metering infrastructure best practices, and the importance of human factors—organizational change management for internal staff, results of consumer behavior programs, and the value of well-developed customer outreach campaigns.
Chris leads the Energetics SGIG effort with nearly 20 years’ experience managing project portfolios, programs and project teams in energy and technology, including service as a FORTUNE 200 corporate director. As vice president of Energetics’ energy solutions division, he provides advice and guidance for program-level work on smart grid investment and project deployment, strategic planning and implementation for technologies and systems, and organizational project portfolio optimization.
The invitations to speak at Saudi Arabia Smart Grid 2015 and RIT highlight Energetics’ recent introduction to the MENA region, where Energetics opened a new office in Dubai earlier this month. From our location in the Dubai Science Park, Energetics can better serve regional organizations interested in clean energy and energy efficiency.