17th August 2017

Eileen Quigley (NRDC sustainability manager)
Andrew Jackson (NRDC chief administrative officer) - conf call
Anthony Guerrero (NRDC director of facilities and sustainability) - conf call
7 others from the NRDC office
Nancy Hamill-Governale (BUD board member & adjunct professor at IIT)
Dr Danielle Kizaire (BUD co-founder)
Charles Sutton (BUD co-founder)
Marie Leaner (BUD board member)
Jean-Paul Thomas (BUD board member)

NRDC meeting

The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) is an international non-profit environmental advocacy group, made aware of BUD’s solar microgrid proposal by utilities company Commonwealth Edison (ComEd). A presentation was requested by the Chicago-based office. The NRDC actively seeks renewable energy projects to support, so this presentation was a significant opportunity for BUD. Danielle and Jean-Paul presented the history and technology of BUD’s microgrid proposal respectively, with additional input from Nancy on IIT’s involvement, past and present.

Though the meeting was generally positive it remains to be seen how much follow-up from the NRDC will actually occur. There was discussion of the NRDC being designated as the ‘anchor tenant’ to BUD’s energy scheme in the long-term, but no mention of short-term funding. My impression was that the NRDC will be happy to buy renewable energy from BUD once the project is up and running, but would not consider financially backing the front-end setup costs. I would be very happy to be proven wrong!

Above: Danielle responding to Eileen Quigley. Cover photo: view from the NRDC office in the Civic Opera House.