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Putnam releases agenda for energy summit

Florida Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam released the agenda for the 2012 Florida Energy Summit. Topics include "the economics of solar in the Sunshine State" and "Converting crops to fuel." Putnam recently took on leadership of the state's energy initiatives.

Here's the statement from his office about the summit:

Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam released the agenda today for the 2012 Florida Energy Summit, featuring representatives from utilities, renewable energy facilities, Florida universities and elected officials. John Hofmeister, founder and chief executive of Citizens for Affordable Energy and former president of Shell Oil Company, will keynote the summit, which will be held August 15 through 17 at the Rosen Shingle Creek Resort in Orlando.

“I’m pleased to welcome John Hofmeister to participate in the 2012 Florida Energy Summit, as well as many other experts in energy, ranging from academics to economists to business leaders,” said Commissioner Putnam. “The speakers and panel discussions will spotlight the latest innovations coming out of Florida’s world-class universities, outline realistic steps Florida citizens and businesses can take to cut their energy costs and explore opportunities for Florida to expand energy production and diversify its energy portfolio.”

In his remarks at the Florida Energy Summit, Hofmeister will discuss practical, affordable energy solutions.

“The United States could be sitting at the precipice of a sustained economic expansion, unlike any experienced since the building of modern America in the post war period of the 1950’s through the 1970’s,” said Hofmeister.  “We currently have the world’s oldest energy infrastructure and an unsustainable dependency on imported natural resources for transportation fuels.  We face greater insecurity, ever higher costs and less reliable energy supplies as a result.  The opportunity to reverse course on energy is here and now.”

Hofmeister is a key member of the United States Energy Security Council, chairman of the National Urban League and member of the U.S. Department of Energy's Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technical Advisory Committee. Upon retiring from Shell Oil Company as president, Hofmeister founded the not-for-profit Citizens for Affordable Energy, which promotes sound U.S. energy security solutions for the nation. As Shell President, Hofmeister launched an extensive outreach program, unprecedented in the energy industry, to discuss critical global energy challenges.

The summit agenda also features panel discussions among members of the Legislature about Florida’s energy policy, H.B. 7117, and conversations about the technologies emerging from Florida’s world-class universities and how they will change the way energy is created, used and stored tomorrow. Other panel discussions will focus on the economic impact of increased energy production, how businesses can cut costs by increasing energy efficiency and the influence of energy on the housing market.

Twitter: @britt_alana