The Future is Now - The Green Economy Going to Scale

Robert Hertzberg, 18th District Senator, California State Senate
Congressman Earl Blumenauer, Congressman, Oregon's 3rd District, US House of Representatives
Steve Berberich, President and Chief Executive Officer, California ISO
Bob Foster, Board Member, EPCOR Utilities

More than ever before, there is a sense throughout California that “green” is not only shorthand for the technologies and policies that benefit the environment, but also the color of the money profited by their creators. In simple terms, green seems to be going mainstream. Some of this is because technology has just gotten better easier, cheaper, and cooler. Some is because of state policies that have incented or even demanded change. And some is, hopefully, because the sensibilities of the average consumer have gradually shifted to prioritize environmental stewardship. Have we — government and business — successfully “primed the pump” so that we can stand back and “watch the magic happen,” or is there more to be done? To what degree do we need to protect consumers from bad ideas, or force them to pick good ones? Will today’s subsidies and incentives (rebates, tax credits, etc.) fade away, or will we always need them to keep innovation and early adoption going?