There are a lot of good cleantech conferences out there. It is quite hard for us to choose which ones we attend and which we skip. Clearly, I’m a big fan of the World Future Energy Summit (+ Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week as a whole) and EVS. But another big one that is new to the scene is starting up in 2015 approximately halfway around the world, in the wonderful city of Vancouver. I will happily be there as one of the speakers, and CleanTechnica is an official media partner.
The conference, Renewable Cities, is much broader than renewable energy or electric vehicles, and even bigger than cleantech as a whole. It is focusing on the real front lines of climate action and societal sustainability — cities.
There are some very big names who will likely headline the conference, but as they are not 100% finalized yet, I can’t allude to who those people are. Just trust me that they are big. But even without them, the other speakers, panelists, and session leaders are clear leaders from whom we can certainly learn a lot. For example, Gregor Robertson, the Mayor of Vancouver and the driver of Vancouver’s Greenest City Action Plan, will be there; as will Eric Martinot, who is a professor & Senior Research Director at the Institute for Sustainable Energy Policies, as well as the research lead behind REN21’s global status reports. Other session/panel leaders will include Joyce McLaren of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Anna Leidreiter of the World Future Council, Alterra Power Executive Chairman Ross Beaty, Copenhagen Deputy Manager Brian Hansen, and others.
Partners include the World Future Council, the Solutions Project (whose key spokespeople include Mark Ruffalo and Mark Z Jacobson), REN21, Go 100% Renewable Energy, Renewables 100 Policy Institute, the City of Vancouver, and others.
The sessions and panels are not going to be focused on boring “this again?” topics either. The biggest challenge or downside for me is going to be the fact that I can’t attend all of them… But that’s the problem with being an abnormally curious person. Luckily, we’ll have more than one CleanTechnica staff member on site at this conference, which will help with that a bit.
Needless to say, I’d love to meet CleanTechnica readers at Renewable Cities or on the Vancouver sidelines — whether you work in a cleantech industry or not. So drop me a line if you can put this conference on your calendar. The dates are May 13–15, 2015.