ECO Newsletter: Week of February 5, 2018

Hi all,

If Punxsutawney Phil sees his shadow in a forest, but no grad students see it because they’re busy studying, do any of them care? Hmmm. Food for thought. Ok, ECO is probably getting out of the zen koan game, but only to focus our efforts on amazing events full of fun and learning! This Thursday is particularly on fire, take a look.






Date:  Thursday, February 8th

Time: 7:00 pm – 10:00 pm

Location: Harlem Tavern (2153 Frederick Douglass Blvd)


Sustainability-minded student groups unite! Come meet colleagues from SUMA and the MPA-ESP program at Harlem Tavern and welcome the end of the week together.



Where Next on Climate? Energy Access, Development and Climate Change: Implications for Policy

Date: Thursday, February 8, 2018

Time: 6:00–7:30 p.m

Location: Faculty House, Presidential Room 2

CGEP is hosting a presentation and panel discussion on climate, energy, and development as part of its speaker series “Where Next on Climate?”. Philippe Benoit, Senior Associate for the Energy and National Security Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), will present findings from his on-going work on climate, energy, and development. Following Mr. Benoit’s presentation, he will join a panel discussion with the following experts:

  • Ellen Morris, Adjunct Professor of International and Public Affairs, Columbia/SIPA
  • Kathleen Auth, Deputy Energy Office Director, Power Africa, US Agency for International Development (USAID)
  • Morgan Bazilian, Executive Director of the Payne Institute and Research Professor of Public Policy, Colorado School of Mines

Register here.


Stormy Weather: Addressing Climate Change in Turbulent Times

Date: Thursday, February 8

Time: 7:00 – 9:00 PM

Location: JCC Manhattan, W. 76th St. and Amsterdam Ave (334 Amsterdam Ave)

Deepen your knowledge of the climate crisis at this interactive workshop led by renowned scientists, faith leaders, and environmental advocates. Learn about this urgent issue, its ramifications, and actions you can take in New York now.

Register via this link. Students can use the code SWSTUDENT18 to obtain a free ticket.


All-Ivy Environmental and Sustainable Development Career Fair

Date: Friday, February 9

Time: 10:00 AM – 3:00 PM

Location: Lerner Hall, Roone Arledge Auditorium (2920 Broadway)

The 15th annual All Ivy Environmental and Sustainable Development Career Fair, will be held on February 9, 2018. 62 organizations are already signed up to attend, including UNICEF, The Synergos Institute, Hannon Armstrong, Tetra Tech, and SUEZ.


Gulf Research Meeting

Application Deadline: Saturday, February 10, 2018

Workshop Topic: A debate on Economic Sustainability in the GCC and elsewhere

Workshop Date: July 31 – August 1, 2018

Gulf Research Meeting (GRM) invites you to participate in the Workshop on “A debate on Economic Sustainability in the GCC and elsewhere”, which is convening in the context of the 9th Gulf Research Meeting (GRM) to take place in Cambridge, UK. We frequently refer to the sustainability of economies in connection with their development path, reliance on natural resources exports, diversification, indebtedness, income distribution, environmental impact and more. Major oil exporting economies are frequently deemed to be unsustainable, but the precise, operational meaning of this statement is far from clear. We aim at a conceptual and practical debate to advance or understanding in this respect. The deadline for submitting paper proposals is February 10: proposals do not need to be elaborate, just the essential contours of what you may intend to cover.


EIA Annual Energy Outlook 2018

Date: Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Time: 9:30–11:00 a.m

Location: Pulitzer Hall, World Room

Please join the Center on Global Energy Policy for a presentation by John Conti, Deputy Administrator of the U.S. Energy Information Administration, of the EIA’s Annual Energy Outlook 2018. The Annual Energy Outlook provides modeled projections of domestic energy markets through 2050, and includes cases with different assumptions of macroeconomic growth, world oil prices, technological progress, and energy policies. CGEP Fellow John MacWilliams will moderate the discussion following the presentation.

Register here.


2018 Climate Change Symposium

Hosted by the Columbia Journal of Environmental Law 

Date: Tuesday, March 6th

Time: 5:00 pm

Location: Columbia Law School, Rm. 103 Jerome Greene Hall


Two New York CLE credits available

Registration Requested

(required for CLE credit)


The symposium will feature the following presentations:


Linking Across Borders: Opportunities and Obstacles for a Joint Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative-Western Climate Initiative Market by Augusta Wilson

Comments by Professor Bruce Usher of Columbia Business School


To Negotiate a Carbon Tax: A Rough Map of Interactions, Tradeoffs, and Risks by Justin Gundlach

Comments by Professor Gregg Macey of Brooklyn Law School


More information here




Strata Solar Summer Internships


The intern will spend 12 weeks in the summer of 2018 supporting Strata’s Green Team project group in creating a Corporate Sustainability Handbook and implementing company best practices to ensure corporate sustainability and awareness in the office and on job sites.


  • Work with Green Team Committee to analyze and measure current waste generated at all stages of Strata’s value chain to develop a long-term sustainable plan for reducing waste in the office and construction sites
  • Analyze and improve proper waste management of packaging materials on deliveries to sites
  • Market analysis of company-wide sustainability initiatives in both the energy and power sectors
  • Final summer project will consist of a corporate sustainable handbook to be presented to Strata management


  • Currently pursuing a Bachelor’s or Master’s Degree in Environmental Sciences, Business Administration, Renewable Energy or similar degree / program.
  • Strong interpersonal communication skills.
  • Demonstrated success completing projects in both a group and individual setting.
  • Some knowledge of financial cost analysis desired.
  • Ability to manage multiple work flows and project groups.


Center for Sustainable Energy (CSE) Assistant Manager, Distributed Energy Resources

Basic Functions: 

CSE’s Distributed Energy Resources (DER) department provides advisory services, technical assistance, and incentive application processing for energy efficiency, energy storage, distributed generation and renewable energy projects and programs. The Assistant Manager will be part of the DER department’s Technology Integration team, which oversees clean energy technology demonstration projects and technical assistance to accelerate the adoption of integrated distributed energy solutions, working toward a zero net energy (ZNE) future. The team’s work is comprised of technology demonstration projects funded by the California Energy Commission (CEC), technical assistance projects funded by the Department of Energy (DOE), feasibility studies for local and regional commercial and government entities, and a growing portfolio of similar projects.

The Assistant Manager must be organized, detail oriented and able to independently prioritize his or her workload schedules based on the needs of the program. This position presents a substantive opportunity for the right applicant to gain valuable experience and a rewarding career in the sustainable energy industry. The ideal candidate will have a strong understanding of emerging issues regarding grid reliability planning (resource adequacy) and wholesale market integration of demand response for increasing the adoption of tools and resources that achieve energy savings in the built environment.

The State of California has established aggressive goals for incorporating behind-the-meter, customer-sited DERs into California wholesale energy markets. However, with only limited testing performed to date, the ability of DERs to simultaneously and cost-effectively meet onsite customer electrical needs while providing energy services into the California Independent System Operator (CAISO) market is largely unproven. The Technology Integration team and its project partners will examine a range of issues, including market registration/participation, metering/telemetry and most importantly, operational strategies that co-optimize between wholesale and retail applications. This work will be publicized to demonstrate the ability of DERs (i.e., customer-sited solar photovoltaic, electric batteries, thermal storage and load management systems) to provide frequency regulation in the CAISO market.

The Assistant Manager will review project performance data; prepare performance reports; maintain and update the online database of projects; meet with public and respond to requests for information; assist in coordinating workshops, events and various marketing and outreach tasks; and support/represent program staff in measurement and evaluation activities.

In addition to project-related duties, this position will also provide overall operational support within the Technology Integration team, including contributing to project development opportunities. Given the ever-changing nature of the clean energy market, the ideal candidate must be flexible, open to changes in implementation strategies and have a demonstrated ability to engage with new technologies and strategies to promote clean energy solutions.

What you’ll be doing: 

  • Compile, read and summarize existing literature to frame demonstration efforts and inform policymakers.
  • Assemble, manipulate, analyze and interpret data from various sources, often in coordination with external project partners.
  • Contribute to written reports describing proposed implementation strategies and results.
  • Work collaboratively with program teams and project partners to achieve objectives.
  • Interact with stakeholders including, but not limited to utility representatives, the California Energy Commission, the California Public Utility Commission, CAISO representatives, the U.S. Department of Energy and project partners.
  • Communicate with demonstration site owners, technical staff and community partners about energy efficiency and energy conservation measures.
  • Participate as needed in program working groups, meetings and regulatory proceedings.
  • Support/represent program staff in public reporting calls and committee.
  • Support program staff in developing presentations.
  • Access and facilitate reporting from existing program, customer relationship management (CRM) and enterprise resource planning (ERP) software databases.
  • Represent CSE programs and CSE at external events as necessary.
  • Perform other related duties as assigned.

The ideal candidate: 

  • Bachelor’s degree in Engineering, Environmental Sciences, Business Administration, or related discipline/coursework from a four-year college or university. Master’s Degree preferred.
  • Minimum 3 to 4 years of related experience, or equivalent combination of education and experience. Required working knowledge of project management principles, managing grant agreements and government contracts. Preferred experience in clean energy industry.
  • Strong knowledge of distributed energy technologies marketplace including energy efficiency, renewables, storage and combined heat and power.
  • A proven track record demonstrating the ability to work in a fast paced, forward moving environment under strict deadlines with the ability to quickly learn new technology.
  • A history of successfully supporting multiple parallel projects while communicating project status and expectations both in and out of the organization.
  • Experience facilitating stakeholder meetings or workshops. Ability to work cooperatively with decision makers, market participants, interested parties, and other agencies.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills, including public speaking and presentation experience.
  • Ability to synthesize complex information and/or data into a written work product.
  • Demonstrated high-level of abilities using various computer software programs and fluency in using standard office software packages, such as MS Office (Access, Excel, Word, PowerPoint and Outlook).
  • Strong organizational, time management and planning skills.
  • Ability to take initiative, be proactive and work with minimal supervision


Scott Belding (

SIPA Environmental Coalition (ECO) Communications Director

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