LAS VEGAS (AP) — U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz and Interior Secretary Sally Jewell have agreed to give keynote speeches at a national clean energy summit this summer in Las Vegas.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced the headliners Thursday for the sixth annual summit scheduled Aug. 13 at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino. This year’s theme is “Energizing Tomorrow.”
Both secretaries are new appointments to President Barack Obama’s Cabinet.
Reid said Jewell has oversight of federal lands that hold the most promise for developing solar, wind and geothermal energy, while Moniz’s department has a multi-billion-dollar budget and the keys to the nation’s research into renewable energy resources.
“They are uniquely positioned to discuss where we are and where we want to go,” the Democrat said.
John Podesta, President Bill Clinton’s former chief of staff, former Senate Republican Leader Trent Lott and former Democratic Sens. Byron Dorgan of North Dakota and Timothy Wirth of Colorado also plan to participate.
Others include former astronaut Kathryn Sullivan, the acting administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, UNLV President Neal Smatresk and Southern Nevada Water Authority general manager Patricia Mulroy.
Among other things, Reid said individual panels will examine various state efforts to develop clean energy and ways to make local communities more resilient to the growing incidence of extreme weather.
They also will forecast the market for clean energy in the 21st century as well as ways to move innovative ideas to commercially available technologies and break through partisan gridlock that serves as a roadblock to new policies.