TAEBC’s 2020 Opportunities in Energy event emphasizes importance of transportation electrification and advanced energy efforts

The Tennessee Advanced Energy Business Council hosted its annual Opportunities in Energy event virtually this week. The event featured TNECD Commissioner Bob Rolfe, a panel discussion about making Tennessee the destination for the electric vehicle supply chain, and preview of the upcoming Advanced Energy Economic Impact Report.

TAEBC Executive Director Cortney Piper kicked off the festivities by providing an overview of TAEBC’s mission and accomplishments in 2020. She spoke about challenges the state faced due to the COVID-19 pandemic and how Tennessee is uniquely positioned to capitalize on transportation electrification to help with economic recovery efforts 

“Transportation electrification and advanced energy could and should be used as job creation and economic development opportunities to help us rise out of our current crisis,” she said.

Commissioner Rolfe spoke about the importance of recruiting original equipment manufacturers to the Tennessee region, Tennessee’s automotive accomplishments, and the Drive Electric Tennessee initiative. He emphasized that the state is committed to becoming an electric vehicle transportation leader in the southeast.

After his presentation, Commissioner Rolfe was joined by John Hopkins, CEO of IACMI; Mike Swords, Vice President of Government Affairs and International Relations at the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator; and moderator Tom Rogers, President and CEO of the UT Research Park at Cherokee Farm, for a panel session, “Tennessee’s EVolution: Making the state a destination for the electric vehicle supply chain.” 

Panelists spoke about the importance of electrification efforts, areas of opportunity, and important steps the state can take to accelerate its goal to be the top state in the country for electric vehicle manufacturing. Answering a question about how Tennessee can reach this goal, Commissioner Rolfe said, “The short answer is to recruit, recruit, and recruit.” 

“When we are recruiting, we want to showcase what Tennessee’s great strengths are,” he continued. These strengths include low business taxes, a high quality of living, affordable housing, and being considered one of the most “business friendly states” in the country. 

During the discussion, Swords spoke about a $150 billion federal stimulus proposal by the Transportation Electrification Partnership and LACI. TAEBC signed on to this proposal in July. Swords complimented Tennessee on its investment in transportation electrification. 

“It seems like there really is an aggressive push to achieve some of these big strategic goals for the state and it sounds like you are being quite successful so far,” said Swords. 

Afterward, Piper moderated a panel discussion about the 2021 Advanced Energy Economic Impact Report with Matt Murray, Director of Howard H. Baker Jr. Center; Amy Henry, Director, Transformative Innovation at the Tennessee Valley Authority; and Marc Gibson, Associate Vice Chancellor of Research at University of Tennessee. 

Murray started with an overview of the 2018 Tennessee Advanced Energy Economic Impact Report and discussed the process for creating it. Speaking about the 2018 report, Murray said the advanced energy economy has been “remarkable in terms of its economic performance.”

“The advanced energy sector in Tennessee is growing at a much more rapid pace than other segments of the economy and at a faster rate than the economy as a whole,” said Murray. According to the 2018 report, employment in the sector grew by 10.3 percent, a rate higher than the state’s overall growth rate of 8.3 percent, since 2013. 

Panelists discussed the importance of this data and how the report can help further advanced energy opportunities in the state. Answering a question about how vital institutions such as UT and TVA can use this data, Gibson explained, “This data is critical for us. We look at it holistically.” 

“I think if we can create that ecosystem and develop something that is statewide, we can make something that is very attractive for industry and others to look at the state of Tennessee as a landing spot,” said Gibson. “We want to be right in the middle of that. I think we have a responsibility to the state and really the region to do that.” 

Missed or loved the event? Watch the recording here and TNECD’s “Tennessee’s Electric Vehicle Evolution” video here.

Opportunities in Energy 2020

Mark your calendars to join TAEBC for its virtual Opportunities in Energy 2020 event on December 8, 2020, beginning at 3:00 pm EST! This virtual event will feature Commissioner Bob Rolfe as we discuss making Tennessee a destination for the electric vehicle supply chain and the Advanced Energy Economic Impact Report preview. RSVP here.

Run of Show:

  • 3:00 p.m. EST: Opening remarks
  • 3:15 p.m. EST: Presentation by Bob Rolfe, TNECD Commissioner
  • 3:22 p.m. EST: “Tennessee’s EVolution: Making the state a destination for the electric vehicle supply chain”
    • Panelists include:
      • Bob Rolfe, TNECD Commissioner
      • John Hopkins, CEO, IACMI
      • Mike Swords, Transportation Electrification Partnership/ LA Cleantech Incubator
      • Moderator: Tom Rogers, President and CEO, UT Research Park at Cherokee Farm
  • 3:47 p.m. EST: Audience Q&A
  • 4:00 p.m. EST: “AE Economic Impact Report Preview”
    • Panelists include:
      • Matt Murray, Director, Howard H. Baker Jr. Center
      • Amy Henry, Director, Transformative Innovation, TVA
      • Marc Gibson, Associate Vice Chancellor of Research, University of Tennessee
      • Moderator: Cortney Piper, Executive Director, TAEBC
  • 4:25 p.m. EST: Closing remarks
The event will be hosted via Zoom Webinar.

Register for Opportunities in Energy 2020!

The Tennessee Advanced Energy Business Council will host its annual Opportunities in Energy 2020 event on December 8, 2020, beginning at 3:00 pm EST. This virtual event will feature TNECD Commissioner Bob Rolfe as we discuss making Tennessee a destination for the electric vehicle supply chain and an Advanced Energy Economic Impact Report preview.

Confirmed speakers  include:

  • Bob Rolfe, TNECD Commissioner
  • John Hopkins, CEO, IACMI
  • Mike Swords, Transportation Electrification Partnership/ LA Cleantech Incubator
  • Tom Rogers, President and CEO, UT Research Park at Cherokee Farm
  • Matt Murray, Director, Howard H. Baker Jr. Center
  • Amy Henry, Director, Transformative Innovation, TVA
  • Marc Gibson, Associate Vice Chancellor of Research, University of Tennessee

Last year, Opportunities in Energy featured Majid Khan, Managing Director of Strategy and Business Development at Verizon, at The Square Room at Market Square in Downtown Knoxville. Khan spoke talk about 5G and the future of energy in our region and the nation as a whole. Learn more about the 2019 event here.

Register for Opportunities in Energy 2020 here! We hope to see you there.

ACMA launches Composites Recycling Conference in Tennessee

The American Composites Manufacturers Association (ACMA), Arlington, Virginia, has announced the conference program for its inaugural Composites Recycling Conference, set for April 10-12, 2018, in Knoxville, Tennessee.

The conference program features the technology and business developments in composites recycling presented by leading experts from U.S. and around the world.

The conference program features panel discussions and presentations from notable companies, including Owens Corning, Ashland, Airbus and the Composite Recycling Technology Center. The program covers a range of topics and industry advancements in composites recycling, including the pyrolysis process capable of recovering glass and carbon fibers; recycling and reusing thermoplastic and thermoset carbon fiber reinforced polymers (CFRPs) in the aviation market; and state-of-the-art recycling technology.

Industry experts and business leaders will share new and existing incentives for recycling and waste reduction that are reducing costs and making the business case for composites recycling.

Additionally, the conference features preconference and postconference tours of leading institutes in the Knoxville area that focus on composites manufacturing and end-of-life recycling. Attendees will have the option to tour IACMI — The Composites Institute Lab at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Oak Ridge National Laboratory Manufacturing Demonstration Facility as well as Local Motors. These tours offer an opportunity to see how government funded laboratories are addressing their challenges, ACMA says, including developing a robust and scalable composite recycling methodology as well as how a local manufacturer is creating products from recycled carbon fiber.

Read more here.

Looking back on TAEBC’s 2016 accomplishments & what’s to come

As we welcome 2017 and anticipate what it will bring, the Tennessee Advanced Energy Business Council (TAEBC) is marking its 2016 achievements.

By championing advanced energy as an economic development and job creation strategy, TAEBC is positioning the state and its members to increase our leadership role in the $1.3 trillion global advanced energy market.

As we enter into a New Year that will likely bring new opportunities and challenges, TAEBC wants to reinforce our commitment to our members and stakeholders:

  • Inform the national energy agenda.
  • Help Tennessee become the #1 location in the Southeast for high quality jobs.
  • Foster the growth of Tennessee advanced energy technologies and startups.
  • Support TVA’s efforts to become the utility of the future.

As we look forward to our annual membership meeting in Nashville, TAEBC shares our top 10 accomplishments from 2016.

TAEBC Top 10 Year in Review

  1. The Energy Mentor Network pairs mentors with promising new companies and entrepreneurs through a structured program involving panel presentations and mentoring sessions. The purpose of the program is to develop quality startups. The network is run by TAEBC in partnership with Launch Tennessee. Currently, there are more than a dozen mentors signed up for the program with expertise in energy systems, clean tech, intellectual property, business and finance strategy.
  2. mccarthyWelcome new members: McCarthy Building Companies, First Solar, John McMillian, Sandi Swilley, Bridgestone Americas, Centrus Energy, Milepost Consulting, Tori Watson, The Angel Roundtable, and Wacker Polysilicon North America.
  3. U.S. Department of Energy Deputy Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency Kathleen Hogan talked advanced energy in Tennessee during TAEBC’s annual Opportunities in Energy event. Special guests included Hogan and Bryan Dods, CEO for the Institute for Advanced Composites Manufacturing Innovation (IACMI). They had an in-depth discussion over the future of advanced energy. During this event there was also the unveiling of a three-part video series showing those who are making a difference in Tennessee’s advanced energy industry and what’s to come in the future.
  4. “This is Advanced Energy” video is the first of the three taking a closer look at what is advanced energy and what it means to Tennessee’s economy as a whole.
  5. insideae“Inside Advanced Energy” video is the second of the three videos giving you an opportunity to meet the people and companies that employ nearly 325,000 people and contribute $33.4 billion to Tennessee’s GDP.
  6. “Innovations in Advanced Energy” is the final of the three videos demonstrating how innovation gives Tennessee an edge in the $1.3 trillion global advanced energy marketplace.
  7. TAEBC is a growing industry leader and is an influential voice throughout the southeastern region, state and nation. In 2016, TAEBC was selected to speak at TVC’s Leadership Summit and Energy Huntsville’s member meetings. In addition TAEBC also moderated a “Clean Energy Innovations” panel at the Southeast Regional Energy Innovation Workshop in May in Chattanooga. The panel focused on clean energy issues in the region, grid research, and the economic impacts from clean energy innovations. As if this wasn’t enough, TAEBC’s board also had a conference call with Congressman Chuck Fleischmann (R- Tennessee) at the end of 2016 to discuss new energy leadership within the new transitioning administration.
  8.  TAEBC participates as a formal member in TVA’s newly formed stakeholder group: the “Distributed Generation- Information Exchange” or DG-IX for short.  TVA’s DG-IX was created to provide a forum for a diverse set of stakeholders to discuss the broad issues around the implementation of the distributed energy side of TVA’s 2015 Integrated Resource Plan. The group’s purpose is to build greater understanding of issues, technologies, and challenges/opportunities in distributed energy resources; facilitate dialogue among diverse interests; hear ideas, and present options and considerations to each other and TVA as they work to implement the 2015 IRP.
  9. New board members joined TAEBC in 2016. Jim DeMouy serves as the Vice President of Environmental, Health, Safety and Sustainability (EHSS) for Bridgestone Americas. He provides environmental, health and safety strategic and operational leadership for the global enterprise, including stewardship for sustainability initiatives. Also Jeff Kanel with Renewable Algal Energy serves on TAEBC’s board. He has more than 21 years of experience engineering research and process development through work at The Dow Chemical Company, Eastman Chemical Company and Union Carbide Corporation.
  10. TAEBC kicked off its new event series, Energy Connect, in Nashville at TAEBC member Bradley’s headquarters in early May. TAEBC’s Energy Connect gives members the chance to network more often during the year, increase the visibility of their business, and share expertise and information. In May more than 20 TAEBC members attended to hear a presentation on economic development from TVA’s John Bradley.

Remember to save the date for the next TAEBC event, Wednesday, February 15 in Nashville and help plan for a successful 2017.