By Gary R. Herbert
As many of you know, energy is one of the four cornerstones of my administration. Given the importance of energy to our state’s economy and to our future, I have decided to host an Energy Summit here in Salt Lake City on Feb. 15, 2012. This first-of-its-kind summit will focus on all forms of energy development, including the development of conventional energy and renewable resources.
This new, balanced approach comes under the guidance of Utah’s 10-Year Strategic Energy Plan. In times past, discussions of conventional energy development, including the mining and extraction of natural resources, have been held apart from discussions of development of renewable and energy efficiency resources. This is partially due to the fact that Utah will be reliant upon conventional energy sources for most of its energy production (as much as 98.5%) for the foreseeable future. However, continuing the development of renewable resources and energy efficiency provides an opportunity to increase Utah’s energy production, create more jobs for the state, and ensure that Utah will continue to be an energy exporting state for years to come.
The Summit will feature presentations and round table discussions that support the goals of the Energy Plan. Energy experts will outline how Utah can lead the nation in the development of traditional, alternative, and renewable energy resources. Panel discussions will address how diversification of Utah’s energy portfolio will provide affordable, sustainable, and secure energy now and in the future. Industry representatives will discuss the potential for job growth, manufacturing expansion, and new enterprise development that will arise from the expansion and continued growth of Utah’s energy sector.
Stay tuned for further details and visit www.energy.utah.gov for more information.