The International District Energy Association’s (IDEA’s) 106th Annual Conference and Trade Show wrapped up on July 1st, and what a few days it was. I was honoured to begin my term as chair of IDEA at the conference. As chair I have the unique opportunity of selecting a theme for the upcoming year. Building on recent IDEA conference platforms, I have introduced the theme “Embracing Change.”
The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in collaboration with the Copenhagen Centre on Energy Efficiency (C2E2) launched its most recent report, District Energy in Cities: Unlocking the Potential of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy on February 26, 2015. The Report discusses how local authorities can develop energy efficient and climate-resistant district energy systems as one of the most cost-effective solutions to reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
I have just returned from a major district energy conference in Seattle, the 105th Annual Conference of the International District Energy Association (IDEA). Every year, the incoming IDEA Chair is charged with the task of presenting a relevant theme for the coming year. Ken Smith, this year’s IDEA Chair and CEO of District Energy St. Paul (MN), has presented his theme, Inspiring the Next Generation. There could not be a more relevant topic at this time.
On April 11, 2014 the City of Markham hosted its first Smart City Forum. This inspiring event brought together a diverse group of participants from sectors that included health care, energy, government, information technology, and more. As panelists addressed Smart City innovations, the Forum’s agenda essentially addressed the question “what makes a Smart City?”