Laying the Foundation for a Sustainable Energy Future: Legal and Policy Challenges

The 2013 J.B. and Maurice C. Shapiro Conference

Wednesday and Thursday, April 10 & 11, 2013
The Jacob Burns Moot Court Room

Co-Sponsors: The George Washington University Law School, Husch Blackwell LLP, The Environmental Law Institute, and The Constellation Energy Foundation

This conference – the first of an anticipated series of such meetings exploring the evolution of the U.S. energy networks between now and 2030 – invited thought leaders to focus on the capital deployment, technology development, and public policy changes that are critically needed to produce a more sustainable energy supply system by 2030.  Most importantly, the program was designed, not to generate a "want list" of legal and technological improvements, but to confront the difficult overlap between environmental, energy, national defense, and societal benefit concerns where key decisions must be made in light of highly sensitive trade-offs and accommodations.  The program explored how we might design an improved energy system that is “built to last” and serves the broadest array of public interests – reliability, security, cost, minimal harm to the physical environment, human safety, competition and ease of market entry, technological innovation, equitable burden sharing, regard for intergenerational impacts –while minimizing regional conflicts and short-term “stimulus and response” policies.

Conference Agenda 

Wednesday, April 10

Keynote: "Four Faces of Energy Sustainability: Law and Policy"

View keynote video

Byron Dorgan, Former U.S. Senator (D-ND) and Senior Fellow, Bipartisan Policy Center

Panel Discussion One

"Environmental Sustainability"

View panel video
View presentation materials - Albert Lin [pdf]

Moderator: Robert Nordhaus, Professor Lecturer in Law, George Washington University Law School, Van Ness Feldman LLP


  • Albert Lin, Professor of Law, UC Davis Law School
  • Frank Lindh, General Counsel, California Public Utilities Commission; Adjunct Law Professor, University of California, Hastings College of the Law, and University of San Francisco School of Law 
  • Carl Zichella, Director for Western Transmission, Natural Resources Defense Council
  • Scott Wilensky, Senior Vice President and General Counsel, Xcel Energy

Panel Discussion Two

"Economic Sustainability"

View panel video
View presentation materials - Robert Pojasek [pdf]

Moderator: Bob Simon, Former Staff Director, Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, U.S. Senate


  • John Felmy, Chief Economist, American Petroleum Institute
  • Paul Allen, Senior Fellow, World Resources
  • Robert Pojasek, Senior Managing Scientist and Sustainability Lead, Exponent, Inc.

Day One Lunch Presentation

"A European Perspective"

View presentation video
View presentation materials [pdf]

Speaker: Marjan Peeters, Professor of Environmental Policy and Law, Maastricht University in the Netherlands; Guest Researcher, Leuphana University

Panel Discussion Three

"Sustainable Energy and National Defense"

View panel video
View presentation materials - Paul Kern [pdf]

Introductions: Ike Skelton, Former Chair, House Armed Services Committee

Moderator: General Robert Flowers, Retired U.S. Army Corps of Engineers


  • Katherine Hammack, Assistant Secretary of the Army Installations, Energy & Environment
  • General Paul Kern, Chairman, CAN Military Advisory Board, U.S. Army (Ret.)
  • Hal Perloff, Partner, Husch Blackwell, LLP
  • Matthew Carr, Managing Director, Industrial & Environmental Section, Biotechnology Industry Organization
  • Christopher Yukins, Co-Director of George Washington Law Government Procurement Law Program

Panel Discussion Four

"Sustainable Societal Benefits and Equities"

Moderator: Betty Ann Kane, Chairman, District of Columbia Public Service Commission


  • Sue Kelly, General Counsel, American Public Power Association
  • Sonny Popowsky, Pennsylvania Consumer Advocate
  • Robert Kenney, Commissioner, Missouri Public Service Commission
  • Leslie Fields, Environmental Justice Director, Sierra Club

Thursday, April 11

Panel Discussion Five

"Deploying Capital for More Sustainable Results"

View presentation materials - Clay Nesler [pdf]
View presentation materials - Josh Sturtevant [pdf]

Moderator: Donna Attanasio, Former President of the Energy Bar Association, White and Case LLP


  • Clay Nesler, Vice President, Global Energy and Sustainability, Legal Fellow, Johnson Control
  • Josh Sturtevant, Partner, Distributed Sun
  • Jim Goettsch, Partner, Husch Blackwell LLP
  • Skip Grow, Managing Director, Clean Technology Group, Morgan Stanley

Panel Discussion Six

"The Contribution of Technology to Sustainable Energy"

Moderator: Brandon Hofmeister, Assistant Professor of Law, Wayne State University Law School


  • Joel Eisen, Professor of Law, Richmond University Law School
  • Jeffrey Marqusee, Executive Director of SERDP and ESTCP, Department of Defense
  • Revis James, Director of Energy Technology Assessment Center, Electric Power Research Institute
  • Jon Freedman, Vice President, Government Affairs & Policy, General Electric Company 
  • Cheryl Martin, Deputy Director of the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E)

Day Two Lunch Presentation

"A Perspective from China"

View presentation materials  [pdf]

Speaker: Ping He, President, International Fund for China's Environment

Panel Discussion Seven

"Federalism in the Context of Sustainable Energy"

View presentation materials - Alexandra Klass [pdf]
View presentation materials - Debra Jacobson [pdf]
View presentation materials - Rolf Nordstrom [pdf]

Moderator:  James Hoecker, Senior Counsel and Energy Strategist, Husch Blackwell LLP


  • Steven Ferrey, Professor of Law, Suffolk University Law School
  • Alexandra Klass, Professor of Law, University of Minnesota Law School
  • Rolf Nordstrom, Executive Director, Great Plains Institute
  • Suedeen Kelly, Partner, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP 
  • Debra Jacobson, Professorial Lecturer in Law, George Washington University Law School

Panel Discussion Eight

"Averting Unsustainable Energy Development and Facilities Siting"

View presentation materials - Jessica Owley [pdf]
View presentation materials - Liese Dart [pdf]
View presentation materials - Kalyani Robbins [pdf]

Moderators: Robert Glicksman, J.B. and Maurice C. Shapiro, Professor of Law, The George Washington University Law School


  • Jessica Owley, Associate Professor, SUNY Buffalo Law School, and Amy Wilson Morris, Associate Environmental Scientist, Aspen Environmental Group
  • Liese Dart, Policy Advisor on Wildlife and Clean Energy, The Wilderness Society
  • Kalyani Robbins, Associate Professor of Law, University of Akron Law School
  • Scott Stewart, Partner, Husch Blackwell LLP

Panel Discussion Nine: Concluding Dialogue

"The Way Forward"

Moderators:  Lee Paddock, Associate Dean for Environmental Legal Studies and Professorial Lecturer in Law, George Washington University Law School


  • Charles Berardesco, General Counsel, North American Electric Reliability Corporation
  • R. Darryl Banks, Vice President for Energy Policy, Center for American Progress
  • Brian Castelli, Executive Vice President, Programs and
    Development, Alliance to Save Energy 
  • Donald Santa, President and CEO, Interstate Natural Gas Association of America

GW Law Portal Apply