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Heffernan and Butcher round out strong Downstream line-up

Former minister of energy Hon David Butcher and Mighty River Power chief executive Doug Heffernan, have been confirmed as the final panellists in the ‘NZ Power’ discussion panel at the forthcoming Downstream conference in Auckland, March 5-6.

Heffernan and Butcher will go up against Greens party leader Dr Russel Norman and Labour deputy leader David Parker.

Parker and Norman are the architects and promoters of the controversial Labour/Greens NZ Power electricity industry reform proposal that has been met with widespread opposition from the industry incumbents.

David Butcher was Minister of Energy and Minister of Commerce from 1987 to 1990 in the David Lange government during a period of intense reforms, deregulation and liberalisation. Butcher had responsibility for ensuring that privatised utilities operated in a competitive environment, or were subjected to appropriate regulation.

Smart grid roadmap release

Another content session to be confirmed of late, sees the high-profile Toby Stevenson of Sapere presenting the release of his Urban Development Smart Grid Roadmap. This report promises to lay down a recommendation for a national approach for the formation of a smart grid by a coalition of the willing. The project has been funded by APEC and EECA with a steering group of key stakeholders.

Delegate registrations ahead of 2013

Organiser Neil Wembridge says that Downstream 2014 will be larger than previous years. “We currently have over 220 registered to attend and based on previous years’ booking patterns, are on track to secure over 250 delegates,” he says. “This will make the event the largest to-date and appropriately sized for the move to the SkyCity Convention Centre.”

Sponsorship sales were also ahead of previous years and delegates would get to view the exciting Tesla Roadster electric sports car in the exhibition area – the only one of its type in New Zealand.

Downstream is organised by Freeman Media and Conferenz. High-level sponsors include Gentrack, PWC, Parsons Brinckerhoff, EECA, ABB and Landis + Gyr.

For a full copy of the conference programme and to register, visit www.nzdownstream.co.nz

ENDS

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