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November Speaker Series

  • Mayflower Church 106 East Diamond Lake Road Minneapolis, MN, 55419 United States (map)

Energy Storage & the Clean Energy Transition

Ellen Anderson will discuss the important role of energy storage in our transition to a clean energy economy, how the role of energy storage is evolving, and what are the barriers and opportunities it faces.  She will give an update on energy storage projects in Minnesota, and what's next in our energy transition.

About the Speaker:

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Ellen Anderson


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Ellen Anderson is the director of the Energy Transition Lab (ETL), within the Institute on the Environment, at the University of Minnesota.  ETL’s mission is to engage university and external experts to catalyze solutions to rapidly reduce carbon emissions and create Minnesota’s clean energy future.

The lab was founded by the Minnesota Energy Storage Alliance (MESA), and focuses on energy storage thought leadership, cities and energy/climate planning, energy equity, grid modernization, and renewable energy.

From 2012 to 2014, Anderson was Senior Adviser on Energy and Environment to Governor Mark Dayton and assisted the state Environmental Quality Board (EQB) on energy and environmental issues.  Anderson helped to coordinate state climate change planning, and led the implementation of Governor Dayton’s Executive Order 11-32, including organizing the EQB’s Minnesota Environmental Congress and issuing Minnesota’s Environment and Energy Report Card.
In March 2011 Governor Mark Dayton appointed Anderson Chair of the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission, where she served until early 2012.  She was a member of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) Committee on Energy Resources and the Environment.
Anderson served in the Minnesota Senate from 1993–2011 and was re-elected five times, representing several neighborhoods of St. Paul and the city of Falcon Heights.  She chaired the Jobs, Energy and Community Development Committee, the Commerce Committee, the Energy and Telecommunications Committee, and the Environment, Energy, and Natural Resources Finance Committee.  Her signature legislation includes many energy and consumer protection laws, including the Renewable Energy Standard, Community Based Energy Development (C-BED), and co-authorship of the Next Generation Energy Act law; raising the minimum wage; co-authorship of the Clean Water, Land, and Legacy Amendment; the Mortgage Foreclosure Prevention Act; and the first law in the nation, now in federal law, protecting nursing mothers in the workplace.  Anderson also served on the Legislative Citizens Commission on Minnesota Resources (LCCMR) and the Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council.
Anderson holds a B.A. from Carleton College and J.D. cum laude from University of Minnesota Law School.  She is an Adjunct Associate Professor at the University of Minnesota, teaching courses in law, energy, and sustainability.  She is a member of the Advisory Boards for the U of MN Joint Degree Program in Law, Science & Technology and for Climate Generation.   She has served in numerous leadership and community volunteer positions and received dozens of awards for her leadership in energy, environment, and economic and social justice issues. 

Most recently, Anderson received the Environmental Initiative 2018 Critical Collaborator Award, the Minnesota Solar Energy Industry Association (MNSEIA) 2017 Partner Award, and 2013 Ecological Society of America Regional Policy Award for Informing Policy with Ecological Science; serves as observer to the e21 utility of the future group, member of Utility Energy Registry State Working Group and ULI Resilient Communities Council, and previously served on the Advisory Committee for the 2014 Midwest Innovation Summit and member of the Citizens League Electrical Energy Study Committee. 
In her spare time, Anderson enjoys reading, travel, gardening, bicycling, hiking, and the great outdoors.

Earlier Event: October 18
Speaker Series
Later Event: December 20
December Speaker Series