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The Current April 2014

The Current
April 2014

WCEE has reinvigorated its Marketing and Communications Section with a new chairwoman, Tenley Dalstrom of Energetics Incorporated. Tenley’s first acts were to pull together her committee—now 12 members strong
and launch a revival of The Current. We’ll be publishing the online newsletter four times a year. We’d love to hear your feedback on our first 2014 issue and story ideas for upcoming issues. Please feel free to contact me at
 - Patrice Courtney-Strong


Melanie Kenderdine: Risk Taker
A Conversation with Kenderdine

By Molly Bauch

Melanie Kenderdine knows how to draw a crowd.

On a recent morning, more than 100 WCEE members packed a private dining room at Clyde’s Gallery Place location to hear the director of the U.S. Department of Energy’s new Office of Energy Policy and Systems Analysis talk about the Quadrennial Energy Review (QER), her professional journey, and her strategy for getting things done. Kenderdine has been generating Beltway buzz of late, as she staffs up her team and takes on the White House’s charge of developing the first-ever QER – an interagency effort, with significant DOE input, that has been billed as a proxy for legislation on climate change and a road map for national energy investments. Over plates of grilled chicken and fresh vegetables, WCEE members got a sampling of some of those initial recommendations - primarily focused on infrastructure investment - along with advice on achieving success in politics and policy.

From left: Judy Neason, chair, Career Building Section; Pam Silberstein, Women in Leadership Committee; Melanie Kenderdine, USDOE; Amy Hemingway, Women in Leadership Committee

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Keystone XL: Polarization and Delays Continue

By Jody M. Foster

For five years now, the Obama Administration has been wrestling with the decision of whether to approve the XL pipeline. This project is the “fourth leg” or last phase of the multi-billion dollar Keystone project by TransCanada Corporation to transport oil sands crude from Alberta’s tar sands to a market hub in Nebraska for further shipment to Gulf Coast refineries. Because the proposed XL would cross the Canadian-US border, a Presidential Permit is required before construction. From the start, the project has provoked strong and partisan reactions from environmental, energy and economic quarters, and today views on the XL have become polarized, making President Obama’s decision increasingly risky in the months leading up to November’s midterm elections to determine control of Congress.

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A Q & A with Mary Anne Sullivan, Hogan Lovells

By Patrice Courtney Strong

Mary Anne Sullivan is a partner at Hogan Lovells and practice area leader for its Energy Regulatory group. Sullivan was general counsel for the U.S. Department of Energy from 1998 to 2001, and deputy general counsel from 1994 to 1998. She serves on the Advisory Board for Science and Technology Partnerships of the Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

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The Way of the Lotus
Scientists develop protective coatings for power lines that repel water

By Angela Perez

Imagine dropping your smart phone into a swimming pool—and then, after a panicked retrieval, finding it’s completely dry and works just fine.

This scenario is now entirely possible thanks to recent developments in water-repellent coatings known as superhydrophobics (try saying that five times in a row). Once applied, superhydrophobic coatings render a surface not just water resistant (like a Gore-Tex-treated raincoat), but completely untouchable by liquids. The potential is astounding.

"Practical application of this technology will save electric consumers millions of dollars in repair costs by protecting equipment that is vulnerable to liquids, like ice," asserts Tom Lovas, technical liaison and contractor with the Cooperative Research Network (CRN), the research and development arm of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, an Arlington-based sevice organization for more than 900 electric cooperatives and public power districts.

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Food Grows Where Water Flows:
The California Drought

By Alexandra Campbell-Ferrari, Esq.

California is experiencing a devastating resource shock: a drought of more than three years, and no end in sight. With more than half of the country’s fruit, vegetables, and nuts grown in California, the biggest impact has been felt by farmers, ranchers and their employees. Seasonal workers are experiencing higher unemployment, and food costs continue to rise as crop yields diminish and more expensive feed is used in place of grass that has not been able to grow in months. The California Farm Water Coalition estimates that the drought could translate into a loss of $11 billion in annual agricultural revenue.

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Copyright 2014 WCEE. Reproduction of material from The Current without permission is strictly prohibited. All rights reserved.

816 Connecticut Ave NW, Suite 200, Washington DC 20006
Tel: 202-997-4512 Fax: 202-478-2098

The Current Team

Marketing and Communications Section Chair:
Tenley Dalstrom

Executive Editor:
Pat Courtney Strong

Molly Bauch, Alexandra Campbell-Ferrari, Jody M. Foster, Angela Perez

WCEE is grateful to the following sponsors:

Angel Sponsors
Booz Allen Hamilton

Sustaining Sponsors

Bloomberg Philanthropies
Bracewell & Giuliani LLP
Berkeley Research Group
ClearView Energy Partners LLC
Duke Energy
Edison Electric Institute
Hogan Lovells LLP
Hill+Knowlton Strategies
PG&E Corporation
Van Ness Feldman LLP
Washington Gas
Winston & Strawn LLP

Women in Leadership Sponsors

ClearView Energy Partners LLC
Energetics Inc
Michael Best & Friedrich LLP
Shearman & Sterling LLP
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP
SunEdison Inc
Sutherland Asbill & Brennan LLP
Wright & Talisman PC

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