May 23 to 26, 2016
Ernest N. Morial Convention Center
New Orleans, Louisiana
Wind produced over 190 million megawatt-hours of power in the United States last year, and the country continues to hold number one spot in the world for wind energy production. Driven by recent tax credit extensions and upgraded transmission infrastructure, current trends point toward meeting the Department of Energy’s first Wind Vision goal of 10% U.S. wind energy by 2020, and more.
As the American Wind Energy Association’s (AWEA) CEO Tom Kiernan said in a recent press statement: “Now more than ever, low-cost, stably priced, zero-emission wind energy is keeping our air clean and cutting costs for consumers. American wind power is well on its way to supplying 20% of U.S. electricity by 2030.” Twenty percent wind power by 2030 is Wind Vision’s second goal, with sights set on 35% by 2050.
To help pave the way in building a stronger wind community and a more successful industry comes the AWEA WINDPOWER 2016 Conference & Exhibition. Enter: This is Generation Wind, the tagline for this year’s event held May 23 to 26 at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans.
“We have an incredible opportunity to take our industry to the next level and WINDPOWER 2016 is where that happens,” shared Kiernan. “It’s where you generate business and where, together, we generate actionable ideas. This is Generation Wind!”
The focus of this year’s event is education and accessibility. AWEA wants to connect visitors with the latest products, innovations, education, and ideas in the industry, while making it easier than ever before.
WINDPOWER has always included educational sessions, but for 2016 expect convenience and accessibility unlike past events. This year’s show offers a mix of sessions and individual presentations throughout the week that will take place right in the exhibit hall with access now granted to all registrants.
Five separate stations on the show floor will include:
- Power Station. Here visitors will gain a better understanding of how wind energy experts are pushing for global growth through market expansions and new commercial opportunities.
- Tech Station powered by GE Renewable Energy. Visit the technology station to hear from the top minds in business, academia, and government on innovations in wind that could fundamentally change the industry.
- Operations Station powered by UpWind Solutions. Learn how to analyze management strategies to better address operational lifecycle issues that challenge wind-farm owners and operators.
- Project Development Station powered by AWS Truepower. Exchange ideas and discuss key topics for developing a successful wind-power project, including siting, permitting, forecasting, monitoring, connecting to the grid, and more.
- Thought Leader Theater powered by Mortenson. This station brings together industry experts to discuss lessons learned and company successes so others can achieve the same.
Along with educational sessions, WINDPOWER 2016 offers a new forum designed to showcase the latest achievements within the wind industry. Five pavilions will showcase contributions made by targeted industry segments that include: Energy Storage, Offshore Wind, Small Business, Distributed Wind, and Product and Innovation Zone.
This year’s Generation Wind theme is directed at today’s wind-power professionals — and tomorrow’s. Last year, AWEA unveiled its Emerging Leaders Program, which uses WINDPOWER as a platform to recognize emerging talent and connect current industry leaders with future wind-power professionals.
The program will expand this year, providing more opportunities for mentorship, knowledge sharing, and skill development. As per AWEA’s site: “Emerging Leaders is designed to help grow and groom the next wave of industry leaders.”
Key features for the 2016 program include:
- Pre-conference seminars where an Emerging Leader can choose one complimentary seminar (such as Wind 101: Introduction to Wind Energy).
- Nearly 20 hours of presentations and panels within the five education stations.
- Meet and greet with AWEA CEO Tom Kiernan and other key AWEA staff, who will provide industry information and contacts from leaders who have volunteered as program Mentors.
- Access to over 100 poster presentations on display with a designated time to connect with the authors to learn more about their work.
- An invitation to an online AWEA Connect community in the works for current and past Emerging Leaders and Mentors to keep in touch and share information.
WINDPOWER registrants and Emerging Leaders will also have access to the Welcome and Opening General Session, which will feature business leaders, political guests, and best-selling author and keynote, Steve Farber.
Listed as one of Inc’s “Global Top 50 Leadership and Management Experts,” Farber is one of the most in-demand speakers and has re-defined what it means to act as a leader of substance and significance. According to his “Extreme Leadership” framework, no matter what is challenging an organization — whether it’s improving customer service, recruiting and retaining talent, building teamwork, or fostering innovation — it all comes down to great leadership.
WINDPOWER 2016 is destined to offer just that — leadership, education, and more — to rookie and veteran wind industry professionals and event visitors.
“WINDPOWER 2016 provides a host of curated networking opportunities. The result is a collaborative, highly effective forum for the exchange of new and exciting ideas, best and next practices, and concrete business opportunities,” said Kiernan. “It’s an exciting time to be part of the next generation of wind energy.”
A few extras
The Collegiate Wind Competition. The inaugural Collegiate Wind Competition took place during AWEA WINDPOWER 2014 Conference & Exhibition, and it’s back for 2016. The U.S. Department of Energy Collegiate Wind Competition challenges undergraduate students to design and build a wind turbine based on market research, develop a business plan, and demonstrate knowledge of siting constraints and location challenges for product installation. The theme of the 2016 competition is to design and construct a wind-driven power system to supply electricity to non-grid connected devices for off-grid applications. Learn more here.
Clean the World. At this year’s WINDPOWER 2016, join fellow colleagues in assembling hygiene kits to support the New Orleans Women & Children’s Shelter. Contribute to a positive impact on the local community while networking with fellow attendees!
A few conference highlights…
Check out the full agenda here.