Eighth Annual Climate & Energy Law Symposium

This event occurred in the past

Date and Time

  • Friday, November 4, 2016 at 8:00 a.m.


Mother Rosalie Hill Hall, Warren Auditorium

5998 Alcala Park San Diego, CA 92110




Climate & Energy Law Symposium

The changing landscape of energy and climate policy in the west



Symposium Overview

Lead Sponsor:

SDG&E logo


Gold Sponsor:

Denton logo

 Silver Sponsor:

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Event Partners:

San Diego County Bar Association logo

Clean Tech logo


At the University of San Diego’s Eighth Annual Climate & Energy Law Symposium, academic and policy experts will analyze and assess three aspects of this complex issue.

Regional Expansion of the California ISO - California’s Independent Operator (CAISO) has developed an Energy Imbalance Market to address the issue of oversupply during certain times of the day and year. The CAISO is also considering expanding beyond California’s borders. Such developments raise interesting questions around federal and state jurisdiction and governance. Are there lessons learned from other multistate RTOs that might apply to CAISO expansion? What would the implications be for the energy and climate policies of states that join the expanded ISO?

Regional Climate and Energy Policy Approaches – In the absence of US EPA’s CPP are state policies sufficient to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the West and beyond? Or is another approach necessary to link state policies similar to the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative among Northeastern states? Is California’s Cap and Trade program a foundation for a broader Western climate policy?

State Approaches to Climate and Energy Policy in the West – Several states already have comprehensive policies to reduce emissions. What tensions exist between state and federal jurisdiction when it comes to these policies? What innovative policies are being adopted or considered around the western U.S.? What are the similarities and differences in how states have approached important policy areas, such as net energy metering?

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Symposium Agenda

8 – 8:45 a.m. Continental Breakfast ⁄ Registration
8:45 – 9 a.m. Welcome
  • Stephen C. FerruoloDean and Professor of Law, University of San Diego School of Law
  • Cassandra Wells, Editor in Chief, San Diego Journal of Climate & Energy Law
  • Scott J. AndersDirector, Energy Policy Initiatives Center, University of San Diego School of Law
9 – 10 a.m. Keynote Panel
  • Travis Kavulla, Commissioner, Montana Public Service Commission and President and Chairman, National Associaton of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC)
  • DeAnn (Dede) Hapner, Vice President, FERC and ISO Relations, Pacific Gas and Electric Company
  • Adrianna Kripke, Senior Environmental Counsel, San Diego Gas & Electric
  • Moderator: Scott J. Anders, Director, Energy Policy Initiatives Center, University of San Diego School of Law
10 – 10:15 a.m. Coffee Break
10:15 a.m. – Noon Panel One
CAISO Expansion
  • Melissa Powers, Jeffrey Bain Faculty Scholar and Professor of Law and Director and Founder of the Green Energy Institute, Lewis and Clark Law School
  • John Anders, Senior Counsel, California Independent System Operator
  • Matthew Freedman, The Utility Reform Network
  • Seth D Hilton, Partner, Stoel Rives
  • Moderator: Tim Duane, Visiting Professor of Law, University of San Diego School of Law
Noon – 1:15 p.m. Lunch
1:15 – 3 p.m. Panel Two
Regional Approaches to Climate Policy in the West
  • Jonas Monast, C. Boyden Gray Distinguished Fellow, Assistant Professor and Co-Director of the Center on Climate, Energy, Environment & Economics (CE3)
  • Danny Cullenward, Research Associate, Near Zero Program, Carnegie Institution for Science
  • Craig Segall, Senior Staff Counsel, California Air Resources Board
  • Moderator: Carrie Downey, Councilmember City of Coronado, Adjunct Professor of Law, University of San Diego School of Law
3 – 3:15 p.m. Coffee Break
3:15 – 5:15 p.m. Panel Three
State Approaches to Climate and Energy Policy in the West
  • Jason Eisdorfer, Utility Program Director, Oregon Public Utility Commission
  • Steven Ferrey, Professor, Suffolk University Law School
  • Mark James, Assistant Professor and Senior Research Fellow, Institute for Energy and the Environment, Vermont Law School
  • Noah Long, Director, Western Energy Project, NRDC
  • ModeratorNilmini Silva-Send, Ph.D., Assistant Director of Energy Policy Initiatives Center (EPIC) and Adjunct Professor, University of San Diego School of Law
5:15 – 5:30 p.m. Closing Remarks
Scott Anders, Director, Energy Policy initiatives Center, University of San Diego School of Law
5:30 – 6:30 p.m. Reception

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Registration Information

  • Registration categories and fees are provided below. Registration fees includes materials, breakfast, luncheon, refreshment breaks, and symposium reception.
  • San Diego County Bar Association (SDCBA) Members receive a 25 percent discount. Please contact SDBCA for discount code before registering online.
  • Student discounts are available.
  • Unfortunately we are not able to allow refunds. Please confirm your schedule prior to registering.

Registration Category
Early Bird
October 17
General Admission  $ 100 $ 125
USD Law Alumni, Academic, Government, and Non-profit 50 75
Students and USD Faculty & Staff 20 45

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MCLE Credit Information

The University of San Diego School of Law is a State Board of California-approved MCLE provider and certifies that this activity is approved for 7 hours of general credit.


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Location & Directions

School of Leadership and Education Sciences (Mother Rosalie Hill Hall)
Warren Auditorium, Room 116
University of San Diego
5998 Alcalá Park, San Diego CA 92110

  • Use I-5 South
  • Exit Sea World Dr. & Tecolote Rd.
  • Proceed left at stoplight toward Morena Blvd.
  • Turn right on Morena Blvd.
  • Left on Napa
  • Left on Linda Vista Rd.
  • Turn left on Marian Way for West Entrance to campus
  • Use I-5 North
  • Exit Morena Blvd. (signs will say: Morena Blvd. use I-8 East)
  • Stay to the right and follow signs for Morena Blvd.
  • Take the first right onto Linda Vista Rd.
  • Turn left on Marian Way for West Entrance to campus
  • Use I-8 West
  • Exit at Morena Blvd.
  • Go right onto Linda Vista Rd.
  • Turn left on Marian Way for West Entrance to campus

From all directions, once you enter the west entrance:

  • Proceed up the hill and follow the signs to the West Parking structure. Attendants will direct you to a parking space.
  • Tram service will be available from 8 – 9 a.m. from the West Parking structure to Mother Rosalie Hill Hall, which will be the first building on your left side (across from Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace & Justice).
  • The symposium will be held in Warren Auditorium, which will be down the hall on your right side in room 116.
  • View Mother Rosalie Hill Hall on USD's campus map.

Visitors are required to display a valid permit Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and are required to pay for parking on campus. Metered parking is available in mulitple locations on campus but we recommend you park in the West Lot and take the designated tram to Mother Rosalie Hill Hall. The tram will have a sign posted on the window that reads "Climate & Energy Law Symposium" and will run 10-15 minutes. Rates for parking in the West Lot are as follows:

  • 30 minutes - $0.75
  • 1 Hour - $1.50
  • 2 Hours - $3.00
  • 4 Hours - $4.00
  • Full Day - $8.00

Mass Transit

For attendees wishing to use mass transit, please be advised that schedules and services are limited; consulting schedules in advance is highly recommended. The most convenient hub is the Old Town Transit Center, which is served by bus, the San Diego Trolley, and the Coaster commuter train. The Old Town station is served by USD shuttle buses.

Hotel Partner

The University of San Diego’s lodging partner is Bartell Hotels

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Previous Symposia

California to Paris: Linking Energy and Climate Policy at the Subnational, National, and International Levels

The seventh annual symposium took place on November 7, 2015 and featured a keynote panel with Congressman Scott Peters (D-52) and Ken Alex, Executive Director of the Governor's Office of Planning and Research and Senior Policy Advisor to Governor Jerry Brown. Speakers discussed the legal challenges and state responses to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Clean Power Plan, the role of subnational entities, including state, provinces, and cities in international climate agreements, and expectations for the Paris Climate talks.

Innovative Regulatory and Business Models in a Changing Electric Industry

The sixth annual symposium took place on November 7, 2014 and featured a keynote panel with Jon Wellinghoff, Stoel Rives Partner and former Chairman of the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), and Jim Avery, Senior Vice President of Power Supply at San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E). Speakers discussed options for the utility of the future, the role of distributed technologies as drivers of change, and possible regulatory models compatible with the future of the electric grid.

California in the Spotlight: Successes and Challenges in Climate Change Law

The fifth annual symposium, which took place on November 8, 2013, featured keynote addresses by Congressman Scott Peters and Virgil Welsh, Special Assistant to Chair Mary Nichols at the California Air Resources Board. Speakers discussed the strengths and weaknesses of California’s cap-and-trade program, the outlook for emission reductions in the transportation sector, and the promotion of low-carbon energy, particularly solar energy.

Law in a Distributed Energy Future

The fourth annual symposium featured keynote addresses by then California Energy Commission Commissioner Carla Peterman and Ken Alex, Senior Advisor to Governor Jerry Brown and Director of the Office of Planning and Research. Speakers discussed the rules that govern the electricity grid change to incorporate distributed generation, the possibilities for generating energy at the neighborhood and community levels, and the legal and policy innovations at the federal, state and local levels needed to accommodate a distributed energy future.

Advancing a Clean Energy Future

The third annual symposium featured a keynote address by Jon Wellinghoff, Chairman of the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). Panelists discussed the role of states in renewable energy development, policies to encourage clean energy and energy efficiency, and the balance between renewable energy development and environmental concerns.

Next-Generation Regulation: Instrument Choice in Climate Law

The second annual symposium featured a keynote address by Jody Freeman, Professor of Law at Harvard University and Former White House Counselor for Energy and Climate Change. Panelists discussed market mechanism and tax law options to reduce greenhouse gases and whether traditional legal and policy mechanisms are still relevant. The 2010 symposium also included a workshop on the challenges of and opportunities for siting renewable energy systems, which included a keynote presentation by former California Energy Commissioner John Geesman.

Federal Preemption or State Prerogative: California in the Face of National Climate Policy

The keynote speaker was Mary Nichols, chairman of the California Air Resources Board. Panelists discussed whether states law and policy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions are preempted by federal law and ways to integrate state and federal actions.


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Contact Information

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Contact Information