Energy and Law Symposium 2017

Energy Symposium 2017

Vermont Law School 4th Annual Energy Law and Policy Symposium

Advancing Clean Energy Policy during the Trump administration / Produced by the VLS Alumni in Energy

October 18, 2017
Alston and Bird LLP, 950 F Street NW, Washington D.C.

The 4th Annual VLS Energy Law and Policy Symposium, produced by the VLS Alumni in Energy affinity group, returns following the change in administrations and facing a new policy landscape.

The Trump Administration is looking to reverse many of the clean energy policies put in place during the preceding administrations and is strongly advocating for an expansion of fossil fuel development as part of its push for American energy dominance. This year’s symposium will examine the status of clean energy policy and whether strong market forces favoring a transition towards clean energy will be impacted.




Dan Phillips JD/MSEL'04, Founding Chairman, Vermont Law School Alumni in Energy Affinity Group
Thomas McHenry, President and Dean, Vermont Law School 

1:15 PM / PANEL 1: “What's Next for Federal Climate Policy-An Update for Energy Professionals”

After eight years of federal action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the Trump Administration is committed to reversing course. Panelists will provide an in-depth update and analysis of federal climate policy developments as agencies continue to implement executive orders on regulatory reform and energy independence, including relevant litigation and potential outcomes. The discussion will focus on how the changes in policy affect the energy sector.

Moderator:  Jessica Olson JD'07, Ayres Law Group LLP


  • David Doniger, Director, Climate and Clean Air Program, NRDC
  • Avi Garbow, Partner, Co-Chair of Environmental Litigation and Mass Tort Practice Group, Gibson Dunn; EPA General Counsel 2013-2017
  • Jeff Holmstead, Partner, Bracewell; EPA Assistant Administrator for Air & Radiation, 2001-2005

2:30 PM / PANEL 2: “Driving a Greener Grid – The Role of Market Forces and Competitive Development in Optimizing the Grid for Renewables

This panel will explore the relationship between renewable energy generation and energy storage resources with RTO transmission development and market processes. Specifically, this panel will discuss how (1) changes in the composition of the energy generation fleet in the U.S. Midwest and (2) how technological advancements in renewable and stored energy resource capabilities are driving changes in RTO rules governing wholesale energy markets and the transmission planning/development processes that enable market participation.

Moderators: Christopher Supino LL.M.'13 



4:00 / PANEL 3: “Impact of Changing Federal Climate Policy on Electric Vehicle Adoption in the U.S.”

Panelists will discuss the impact of current federal policy on the growth of the electric vehicle market and transportation electrification. Panelists will describe how their organizations have responded to federal policy shifts and the activities they are undertaking to grow the market, as well as share thoughts on the importance of transportation electrification to the goals and future of their organizations.

Moderator: Thomas Ashley JD/MSEL’08



  • Norman Bay, former commissioner of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission




Our Sponsors

IEE logo VLS Alumni in Energy logo DC Bar Communities sponsor Alston & Bird sponsor

Become a Sponsor

If you would like to be a sponsor of the 2017 Symposium, please fill out the form here or contact Melissa Harwood.


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