Conference Program Overview
*will be updated regularly as speakers are confirmed
Pre-Conference Activities: Monday, December 4, 2023
MRC Member Only Sessions
Following the success of last year’s Member Sessions, Marine Renewables Canada (MRC) is offering another opportunity for MRC members to attend pre-conference training and information sessions. These are designed to support members’ needs and business efforts, and will provide MRC members with knowledge, insight, and practical advice to assist with project planning and development, business development and growth, and relationship-building. MRC Member Sessions are complimentary with conference registration and exclusive to MRC members.
10:00 AM | Registration Opens
1:00 – 2:15 PM | Building the Marine Renewable Energy Workforce
As the renewable energy sector grows, so does the need for new skills and expertise. In fact, some studies suggest that 30 million jobs in renewable energy and energy efficiency must be created globally by 2025, with that number rising to 60 million by 2030. While this is great news from a job creation perspective, Canada will need to ensure its workforce has the skills and expertise required to build projects and remain competitive with other jurisdictions experiencing similar challenges. This session will provide insight on the challenges in building the marine renewable energy workforce and the national and global trends that may impact workforce development. It will also explore best practices for creating a diverse and inclusive workforce for the jobs of tomorrow.
- Michelle Branigan, CEO, Electricity Human Resource Canada (EHRC)
- Mark Chapeskie, Vice President of Program Development, Electricity Human Resource Canada (EHRC)
2.30 – 3:30 PM | Best practices and Strategies for Co-existence Amongst all Ocean Users
Marine renewable energy is an emerging industry for Canada – and coexistence with other ocean users and uses is essential for this industry’s success. As the interest in marine renewables increases, it’s crucial for this industry to understand potential impacts, plan thoughtfully, and engage early with other oceans users. This session will highlight best practices for responsible development and co-existence, drawing on lessons learned and insight from other jurisdictions who have embarked on marine renewable energy development.
- Alison Bates, Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies, Colby College
3:45 – 4:45 PM | Legislative Deep Dive: Insight on the Accord Acts, Impact Assessment Act, and other Key Legislation
As Canada sets its sights on offshore wind, a critical first step is the establishment of a regulatory framework that will provide the predictability industry and investors need to scope projects and pursue development. A number of legislative and regulatory activities are underway to support future project development including amendments to the offshore Accord Acts (Bill C-49) and the establishment of Offshore Renewable Energy Regulations (ORER). This session will provide members with an understanding of these key pieces of legislation and how they will support the offshore renewables sector, as well as insight on the implications of recent legislative updates such as the Supreme Court of Canada opinion on the Impact Assessment Act.
Cox & Palmer Panel:
- Mohammad Ali Raza, Partner
- Guy Wellard, Partner
- Matthew Dorreen, Partner
6:00 – 8:00 PM | Reception on Parliament Hill
* By invitation only to MRC members.
Day One: Tuesday, December 5, 2023
*Program sequence/sessions are subject to change until finalized.
7:30 am | Registration Opens
9:00 am – 9:45 am | Opening & Welcome
- Elisa Obermann, Executive Director, Marine Renewables Canada
- Elder Verna McGregor, Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg First Nation, Native Women’s Association of Canada
- Peter Huttges, Chair, Marine Renewables Canada
- Simon De Pietro, CEO, DP Energy (Presenting Sponsor)
9:45 am – 10:45 am | Session 1: Building the Market: Pathways to Offtake
Marine renewable energy holds huge potential to contribute to Canada’s electricity mix, as well as the production of green fuels like hydrogen and ammonia. Successfully establishing markets and creating off-take opportunities is dependent on many different factors that are influenced by policy, costs, and technical constraints, to name a few. This opening session will explore routes to market for marine renewable energy projects and what’s possible in the near and long term.
- Phil Duguay, Vice President – Business Development, Grid United
- John Dalton, President, Power Advisory
- Ivette Vera-Perez, CEO, Canadian Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Association
- Francis Bradley, CEO, Electricity Canada
10:45 am – 11:15 am | Morning Refreshment Break
* Sponsored by COVE
11:15 am – 12:15 am | Session 2: Pursuing Canada’s Offshore Wind and Green Hydrogen Opportunities
Prospects for offshore wind and green hydrogen development in Canada have gained traction over the last couple of years, with interest across the country. During this panel, speakers will provide insight on industry activities currently underway, hurdles that need to be overcome, and how trends in the global market could impact Canadian project development.
- Darius Snieckus, Chief Executive Editor, Aegir Insights
- Brendan Chard, Vice President – Power, EverWind Fuels
- Paul MacLean, Managing Director, Bear Head Energy
- Scott Hamilton, VP Organization – Offshore Wind New Markets, Xodus Group
- Michael Galvin, Director of Hydrogen and Sustainable Fuels, Simply Blue Group
12:15 pm – 2:00 pm | Networking Lunch
*Sponsored by Bourque Industrial
2:00 pm – 3:00 pm | Session 3: Addressing Environmental Risk: Reducing Uncertainties of Tidal Energy Development
With tidal energy devices operating successfully in Canada and internationally, a remaining step to unlocking the potential of this resource is retiring risk of potential impacts to marine life and the environment. At this stage of industry development, few observations or data collection efforts point to devices or systems that are causing population-level impacts. However, there are still unknowns, and this has contributed to some of the regulatory barriers experienced by projects to date. This session will explore what is known about environmental effects of tidal energy, what’s been done to fulfill regulatory requirements and ensure responsible development, and what’s needed to address this remaining hurdle.
- Lindsay Bennett, General Manager, Fundy Ocean Research Centre for Energy (FORCE)
- Andrea E. Copping, Senior Advisor – Coastal Sciences Division, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
- Anna Redden, Director, Acadia Tidal Energy Institute
- Stuart Davies, CEO, ORPC Inc.
3:00 pm – 3:30 pm | Afternoon Refreshment Break
*Sponsored by Baird
3:30 pm – 4:30 pm | Session 4: Enabling Industry Growth: Updates on Policy and Regulatory Development
Supportive policies and a predictable regulatory path are crucial to the success of marine renewable energy development. During this session, government representatives will provide updates on policy and regulatory development that will help facilitate industry growth, as well as initiatives underway to address challenges and provide clear lines of sight for industry and investment.
- Lisen Bassett, Policy & Communications Lead, Marine Renewables Canada
- Alexandra Dostal, Senior Assistant Deputy Minister, Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO)
- Abigail Lixfeld, Senior Director – Renewable and Electrical Energy Division, Natural Resources Canada
- Sandra Farwell, Director, Marine Renewables and Clean Innovation, Department of Natural Resources
6:00 pm – 8:00 pm | Welcome Reception
Join us for an evening of networking, hors d’oeuvres, and live music.
*This reception is included with conference registration and all conference delegates are encouraged to attend.
Day Two: Wednesday, December 6, 2023
*Program sequence/sessions are subject to change until finalized.
7:30 am | Registration Opens
9:00 am – 9:15 am | Welcome
9:15 am – 10:00 am | Session 5: Fireside Chat – Embracing Marine Renewables in Indigenous and Remote Communities
Marine renewable energy has been increasingly recognized for its potential to displace diesel use in remote, coastal, and Indigenous communities. While this is still a fairly new technology option, some Indigenous communities in North America have embraced its potential and are moving forward with projects. During this armchair discussion, attendees will hear from Indigenous leaders who are collaborating with industry, academia, and others to harness the power of the waves, rivers, and tides.
- Dr. Mary Lou Lauria, Vice President Operations – North America, Worley
- Christopher Henderson, President, Lumos Energy
- Azar Kamran, Band Administrator & CEO, Mowachaht/Muchalaht First Nation
10:00 am – 10:30 am | Morning Refreshment Break
*Sponsored by Moog-Focal
10:30 am – 11:15 am | Fireside Chat
11:15 am – 12:30 pm | Session 6: Seizing Canada’s Offshore Wind Opportunity: What will it take?
The emerging offshore wind opportunity in Atlantic Canada has caught the attention of the world. But, what’s needed to truly make it a reality? Are we on the right track? What are the risks and range of costs? And how can progress be accelerated by leveraging lessons learned from other industries as well as jurisdictions already developing offshore wind? This session will explore all of those questions and more with an aim to pinpoint some of the near-term priorities and actions needed to ensure sector growth.
- Dawn MacDonald, Global Offshore Wind Market Sector Lead, AECOM
- Anne-Marie Belliveau, Offshore Development Manager, DP Energy
- Blair MacDougall, President, Waterford Energy Service
- David Timm, Global Head of Public Affairs, Northland Power
- Katja Akentieva, Vice President – New Energy Solutions, Western Hemisphere, TGS
12:30 pm – 2:00 pm | Networking Lunch
*Sponsored by SBM
2:00 pm – 3:15 pm | Session 7: Global Market Insights and Opportunities
The race to net zero has changed the global energy market, with investment in renewables increasing year after year. While the opportunity for marine renewable energy is growing, this growth can also present unique challenges. This session will provide updates on marine renewable energy development around the world, insight on key issues impacting the marine renewable energy sector, and perspectives on challenges and future market growth.
- Nicolai Pogadl, Senior Manager, Canadian German Chamber of Industry and Commerce Inc.
- Emily Kuhn, Associate Partner, ERM
- Ryan Davidson, Business Development Lead, CalWave Power Technologies Inc.
- Kelly Rogers, Manager of Policy and Communications, National Hydropower Association
- Oliver Wragg, Commercial Director, Orbital Marine Power
3:15 pm | Conference Closing
5:00 pm – 7:00 pm | Post-Conference Mixer
Join us for an informal post-conference gathering at the Heart & Crown ByWard Market for one last opportunity to network with conference delegates in a relaxed and casual setting.
All conference delegates welcome – no RSVP required.