WisPolitics.com/WisBusiness.com: Focus on Midwest Energy II conference set for Feb. 23 in Madison

— Agenda includes U.S. Rep. Baldwin, Obama environmental adviser Learner as keynoters —

For Immediate Release 

Contact: Jeff Mayers, president, WisPolitics.com/WisBusiness.com, 608-212-9422

MADISON, Wis. – U.S. Rep. Tammy Baldwin, D-Madison, and Howard Learner, a senior energy and environmental adviser for Barack Obama’s presidential campaign, will highlight a “Focus on Midwest Energy” conference on Monday, Feb. 23 at Madison’s Monona Terrace.  A third keynote speaker and other event details will be announced in the coming weeks.

The half-day event in Madison this February will assemble key business, government and research representatives to explore energy issues in light of the changing political landscape in Madison and Washington, D.C., and look ahead to the future of Midwest energy policy. This is the second annual energy event organized by WisPolitics.com and WisBusiness.com .

The confirmed keynote speakers: 

— U.S. Rep. Tammy Baldwin, D-Madison, is a member of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce. She has represented Wisconsin’s 2nd Congressional District since 1999.  As a member of the Energy Subcommittee, she is actively engaged in crafting legislation to address climate change and is the author of the Greenhouse Gas Registry Act, a bill to create a greenhouse gas registry that will serve as a clearinghouse for accurate, comprehensive, consistent, and transparent information on greenhouse gas emissions nationwide. Further, as a key player in the passage of the Energy Independence and Security Act, which moves the United States closer to energy independence, Baldwin successfully fought for language to increase industrial and home energy efficiency standards, encourage advanced battery and plug-in hybrid programs, minimize exposure to mercury in energy-efficient light bulbs, and study the adequacy of railroad transportation for renewable fuels. 

— Howard Learner has served as an adviser to President-elect Obama on environmental and renewable energy issues. Learner is an experienced attorney serving as president and executive director of the Environmental Law and Policy Center, the Midwest’s leading environmental legal advocacy and eco-business innovation organization, and he is responsible for the overall strategic policy direction, development and leadership of this regional public interest organization. Before founding ELPC, he was the general counsel for Business and Professional People for the Public Interest, a public interest law center specializing in complex civil litigation and policy development. He’s an adjunct professor at Northwestern University Law School, teaching an advanced environmental law seminar. Education: J.D., Harvard Law School, 1980; B.A., Political Science, University of Michigan, 1976.

Other conference participants include: Eric Callisto, chair of the Wisconsin Public Service Commission; Tia Nelson, executive secretary of the Board of Commissioners of Public Lands and co-chair of the Governor’s Task Force on Global Warming; Ave Bie, partner at Quarles & Brady and former PSC chair; Molly Jahn, dean of the UW-Madison College of Agricultural and Life Sciences;  Pete Taglia, staff scientist for Clean Wisconsin; and other experts.  

The event is open to the public. Individual tickets cost $50 if purchased by Feb. 11; tickets after that cost $75 each. Tables are available for purchase on a first-come, first-served basis at a cost of $600. Student discounts also will be available. The ticket price includes food. 

For ticket information, contact Jim Greer at 608-237-6296 or [email protected]

Initial sponsors for this event include Xcel Energy, Alliant Energy and Dominion.  The government of Canada is an event partner.  For sponsorship information, contact Jim Greer at 608-237-6296 or [email protected]

WisPolitics.com and WisBusiness.com are independent, non-partisan news services based in Madison. Go tohttp://www.wispolitics.com and http://www.wisbusiness.com for more on the services.


Date: Monday, February 23, 2009

Location: Monona Terrace Convention Center, located in downtown Madison. 

Format: Half-day, with keynote speakers plus breakout sessions.


8 a.m. – Registration begins

8:30 a.m. – Breakfast begins 

8:45 a.m. – Welcome keynote: U.S. Rep. Tammy Baldwin 

Morning keynote: TBA

9:45 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. – Breakout panel sessions

— Session I: Balancing America’s Energy Portfolio

— Session II: The Future of Petroleum 

Noon – Luncheon begins Keynote: Howard Learner, Environmental Law and Policy Center

1 p.m. – Conference concludes