RESTON, Va., Nov. 8, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Risk management, safety, support cost analysis and systems reliability were just a few of the issues examined by electric utility industry leaders during the EUCG Fall Conference & Workshop in Denver.
EUCG, a global association of energy and electric utility professionals, meets semiannually to discuss current and emerging industry issues, share best practices and exchange data for benchmarking purposes. The association is in its 39th year of service to the power generation industry.
"Safety and systems reliability are two major focuses of the electric utility industry today," remarked EUCG President George W. Sharp from AEP (NYSE: AEP). "Our members gathered for this workshop to become better prepared to face the challenges of the future and to make better and more informed decisions in their roles in their organizations."
"There were a lot of synergies across multiple presentations from different providers in this workshop that led to a common discussion thread on cost and process definitions in the industry. The format was very informative and encouraged open dialogue across member companies to share and analyze best practices that have been implemented or are being planned," said David Ward, Jr., chairman of EUCG's Nuclear Committee from Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK).
The workshop's opening remarks were provided by David Harkness, vice president and chief information officer, Xcel Energy (NYSE: XEL), responsible for all information technology development, operations and governance, cyber security functions, and the company's business continuity programs. Harkness described Xcel Energy's business systems and its enterprise technology priorities including modernizing the infrastructure foundation, deploying expanded mobile functions, providing enterprise systems, data integration, and self-service capabilities. Harkness noted that Xcel Energy's business systems principles included thinking more strategically, maximizing outsource value, and increasing throughput. Harkness also discussed the key inputs to an enterprise IT plan, the information technology operating model, and the critical success factors for IT.
Joining Harkness in the keynote welcome address was Mike Moon, senior director of reliability risk management for the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC). Moon described NERC's statutory program areas and its regulatory models for the electric utility industry. Moon focused his discussion on preventing failures before they happen and "regulating" the avoidance of failures, and on NERC's risk-based compliance monitoring and enforcement program.
EUCG Committees held Forums to discuss current events and what the future will bring to the utility technologies. During all of the Forums, members were encouraged to continue to pursue EUCG's mission to support discussion and dialogue among everyone and to continue to raise the overall performance of electric utilities.
During the Membership Meeting, the 2012-2014 EUCG Officers and Directors were announced and are as follows:
The conference was held Sept. 23-26 at the Denver Marriott City Center and attracted more than 100 electric utility professionals from various utility technologies from all over the world. "We were all very pleased with the educational and networking opportunities with this workshop and conference. Our workshop theme was 'Reaching New Heights,' and our attendees are certainly poised to reach new heights with the information and knowledge gained at the meeting. I am extremely grateful for the commitment from all of our members and participants," Sharp said.
The next EUCG Conference will be held in Nashville, Tenn., April 14-17, 2013, at the Hilton Nashville Downtown. For more information, please visit the EUCG website, www.eucg.org.
About EUCG: EUCG is a global non-profit association of energy and electric utility professionals who discuss current and emerging industry issues, share best practices and exchange data for benchmarking purposes. The 38-year-old association is organized into committees that represent specific utility functions: Fossil, Nuclear, Hydroelectric, Transmission & Distribution, and Information Technology. Members attend semiannual workshops that focus on strategic planning, maintenance practices, operations management, outage management and various other aspects of the electric utility business. Membership is open to all utility companies and professionals worldwide. Interested parties should contact Don Kaiser, EUCG Executive Director, at 703/234-4116 or Kaiser@eucg.org.