Overview

What is the Future of Gas Utilities Symposium?

The natural gas utility industry is facing increased uncertainty and risk in the current environment of decarbonizing the energy sector. With approximately $150–180 billion of unrecovered gas distribution infrastructure at risk, gas utilities will need to organize and become proactive and innovative participants in a clean energy transition. The Future of Gas Utilities Symposium will explore the role natural gas utilities can play in the transition to a decarbonized future.

Why should I attend?

Drawing from the topics covered in Brattle’s Future of Gas Utilities Series, the symposium will feature experts from across the US. They will explore the risks and opportunities facing natural gas utilities, examine strategies for navigating the transition to clean energy, and discuss the implementation of regulatory pathways and changes to traditional business models.

When and where is the event?

You’ll want to clear your calendar from 12:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. EST on Tuesday, December 7 and Wednesday, December 8, 2021. Our symposium will be a virtual event via Zoom. Details will be emailed upon registration.

Register for Day 1 Register for Day 2

Learn How to Successfully Transition to a Clean Energy System

The natural gas utility industry is facing increased uncertainty and risk in the current environment of decarbonizing the energy sector. The Future of Gas Utilities series outlines the key challenges and opportunities facing the gas industry, and aims to help gas and combination utilities navigate the natural gas transition in a fiscally and socially responsible way.

Read the 3-Part Series

 

Speakers

We are continuously adding speakers to our event. Be sure to check back regularly or sign up for the event to stay informed about our guests.

Josh Figueroa
Associate

The Brattle Group

Frank C. Graves
Principal

The Brattle Group

Michael Hagerty
SENIOR ASSOCIATE

The Brattle Group

Veronica Irastorza
Principal

The Brattle Group

Long Lam
Associate

The Brattle Group

Kasparas Spokas
Associate

The Brattle Group

Dave Sunding
President & Principal

The Brattle Group

Mallik Angalakudati
Senior Vice President

WGL

Jay Balasbas
Commissioner

Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission

Diane X. Burman
Commissioner

New York State Public Service Commission

Gregory Caldwell
Director, Utility Hydrogen Strategy

ATCO Gas

Stephen Caldwell
Vice President

Future of Heat, National Grid

Barbara Chapman
Senior Director

Fitch Ratings

Megan Gilman
Commissioner

Colorado Public Utilities Commission

Mark Kahrer
Senior Vice President

Regulatory Affairs, Marketing and Energy Efficiency, New Jersey Natural Gas

Natalie Karas
Senior Director & Lead Counsel

Environmental Defense Fund

Suedeen G. Kelly
Partner

Jenner & Block LLP

Robin Lanier
Renewable Gas Director

Southern Company Gas

Andy Lubershane
Sr. Vice President, Research & Strategy

Energy Impact Partners

Despina Niehaus
Director of Strategic Planning

SoCalGas

John Quackenbush
President

JQ Resources

Day One

  • Welcome
    12:00–12:15 p.m. EST

    Opening Remarks by Dave Sunding, President & Principal, The Brattle Group

    Join us for the introduction of the Future of Gas Utilities Symposium.

  • Introductory Session: Natural Gas’ Changing Landscape
    12:15–12:45 p.m. EST

    Presented by Frank Graves | Principal, The Brattle Group

    This session will lay the groundwork for the symposium and will discuss at a high level how and why the role of natural gas is changing. Topics will include the key challenges and questions facing the industry, such as the size and pace of potential stranded costs, as well as changes in the natural gas landscape, such as natural gas bans, reach codes, and Non-Pipeline Alternatives rules. The session will also address the need for long-term solutions, new tools, regulations, and metrics to manage the natural gas transition.

  • Panel 1: How are Gas Utilities Anticipating the Push to Electrify?
    12:45–1:45 p.m. EST

    Andy Lubershane, Sr. Vice President, Research & Strategy, Energy Impact Partners
    Gregory Caldwell, Director, Utility Hydrogen Strategy, ATCO Gas
    Diane Burman, Commissioner, New York State Public Service Commission

    Moderated by Michael Hagerty, Senior Associate, The Brattle Group

    What is the timeline for and extent of the electrification transition, and what are the critical success factors for natural gas utilities to manage the transition? Panelists will discuss the pace of potential loss in the gas industry if electrification goals are achieved, and the role that clean fuel may play in a deeply decarbonized world.

  • Break
    1:45–2:00 p.m. EST

     

  • Panel 2: Assessing Risk & Opportunities
    2:00–3:00 p.m. EST

    Mallik Angalakudati, Senior Vice President – Strategy and Innovation, WGL
    John Quackenbush, President, JQ Resources
    Barbara Chapman, Senior Director, Fitch Ratings

    Moderated by Josh Figueroa, Associate, The Brattle Group

    How will the changing role of natural gas affect gas utilities? The panel will discuss the risks and opportunities facing gas utilities as a result of decarbonization, and why it is imperative to be proactive now to manage this transition. Panelists will also address social justice considerations.

  • Closing Remarks
    3:00–3:30 p.m.

    Closing Remarks by Veronica Irastorza, Principal, The Brattle Group

    A wrap up of the day’s topics and a look ahead to Day Two: Potential Solutions

Day Two

  • Welcome
    12:00–12:10 p.m. EST

    Welcome and review of Day One’s content

  • Panel 3: Strategies to Transition Gas Utilities to a Decarbonized Future
    12:10–1:10 p.m. EST

    Natalie Karas, Senior Director and Lead Counsel, Environmental Defense Fund
    Stephen Caldwell, Vice President, Future of Heat, National Grid
    Robin Lanier, Renewable Gas Director, Southern Company Gas

    Moderated by Kasparas Spokas, Associate, The Brattle Group

    This panel will discuss how gas utilities can successfully navigate the transition to a decarbonized future, from strategies to grow business while decarbonizing to the regulatory frameworks that enable them. Panelists will discuss which strategies are possible in the near term, as well as how utilities’ unique position to plan and implement large infrastructure transitions could best be harnessed to enable the transition.

  • Keynote Presentation: Federal Government Policies on Decarbonization
    1:10–1:55 p.m. EST

    Presented by Suedeen G. Kelly, Partner, Jenner & Block LLP

    Details coming soon.

  • Break
    1:55–2:10 p.m. EST
  • Panel 4: Implementation of Regulatory Frameworks and Strategies
    2:10–3:15 p.m. EST

    Jay Balasbas, Commissioner, Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission
    Megan Gilman, Commissioner, Colorado Public Utilities Commission
    Mark Kahrer, Senior Vice President, Regulatory Affairs, Marketing and Energy Efficiency, New Jersey Natural Gas
    Despina Niehaus, Director of Strategic Planning, SoCalGas

    Moderated by Long Lam, Associate, The Brattle Group

    What steps do gas utilities need to take today to put the strategies into action? This panel will focus on the regulatory pathways and changes to the traditional business model, including energy efficiency incentives, performance-based ratemaking (PBR), and decoupling. Panelists will also address how regulation and legislation may need to change to allow gas utilities to participate.

  • Closing Remarks
    3:15–3:30 p.m. EST

    Closing Remarks by Frank Graves, Principal, The Brattle Group

    Thanks for joining our symposium!

We hope to see you there!

Register for Day 1 Register for Day 2

If you have any questions about the event, please contact events@brattle.com.