Session Day 2

Vertical farming is the practice of producing food and medicine in vertically stacked layers, vertically inclined surfaces and/or integrated in other structures (such as in a skyscraper, used warehouse, or shipping container). The modern ideas of vertical farming use indoor farming techniques and controlled-environment agriculture (CEA) technology, where all environmental factors can be controlled. These facilities utilize artificial control of light, environmental control (humidity, temperature, gases…) and fertigation. Some vertical farms use techniques similar to greenhouses, where natural sunlight can be augmented with artificial lighting and metal reflectors.

Smart buildings provide building services that make occupants productive at the lowest cost and environmental impact over the building lifecycle. Reaching this vision requires adding intelligence from the beginning of design phase through the end of the building’s useful life. Smart buildings use information technology during operation to connect a variety of subsystems, which typically operate independently, so that these systems can share information to optimize total building performance. Smart buildings look beyond the building equipment within their four walls. They are connected and responsive to the smart power grid, and they interact with building operators and occupants to empower them with new levels of visibility and actionable information

Smart buildings are always energy efficient and building energy efficiency begins with a high performance building shell.  And there is a new generation of air tight and well insulated panel systems that not only provide added energy performance but, also provide savings through faster installation.  High performance windows that are double or triple pane in conjunction with these panel systems will further optimize the energy performance of a building shell.  And the inclusion of Solar Glass in place of conventional curtain walls can actually turn the building shell into a net revenue generator.

Mobility is an essential aspect of life in the city. It has a major effect on the quality of life and it is key to the economic health of cities. But the reality is, unfortunately, that mobility systems in major cities are under strain. It has been documented that urban areas account for 80% of CO2 emissions, a large part of which is generated by transport. In the face of challenges such as demographic increase, poverty concentration, social polarization, pollution and climate change, cities around the globe need to develop new, more sustainable forms of mobility in order to continue to be drivers of growth.

Smart Mobility in the future will be more dynamic and human-centric. It will provide ways for users to optimize their moves by using applications and services that can process real-time conditions and provide accurate instantaneous information about various locations of interest.

The evolving CleanTech and Smart Building marketplace is flush with numerous products and services that can significantly improve organizational efficiency and lower facility operating expenses.  Often overlooked within this marketplace, Information Technology and Big Data offer tremendous opportunities for organizations and companies to easily realize such efficiencies.  In this session, we will explore the best and and most cost effective IT and Big Data solutions for both large and small companies and organizations and how the are driving both efficiency and sustainability

The Smart Grid Investment Grant (SGIG) program aimed to accelerate the modernization of the nation’s electric transmission and distribution systems. The program selected projects—electricity providers across the nation with plans to upgrade their systems—through a merit-based, competitive solicitation. As a result, a total of 99 projects received federal financial assistance for up to 50% of eligible project costs. Through these projects, the SGIG program promoted investments in smart grid technologies, tools, and techniques that increase flexibility, functionality, interoperability, cyber security, situational awareness, and operational efficiency.  In this session, we will examine Business Models in the Smart Grid along with the challenges, opportunities, and strategies for Profitability


The best, user-friendly source for identifying most local, state and federal green building incentive programs is the Database of State Incentives for Renewable and Efficiency (DSIRE).  This database provides comprehensive information on local, state, federal and utility incentives and policies that promote renewable energy and energy efficiency.   For New York State, the New York State Energy, Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) and ConEd have are numerous programs and resources for such incentives.  But the process of actually obtaining such financial incentives can be onerous and requires knowledge and experience to succeed.   In this session, the DSIRE, NYSERDA and ConEd websites will be reviewed to assist the audience in navigating through the various programs.  Practical tips will be provided for streamlining the process of actually obtaining funds.  Lessons Learned will also be discussed to minimize wasted time and effort.


There are many tax savings strategies available today for commercial cash flowing properties.  When a portion of those savings are reinvested into smart building strategies that improve energy efficiency and indoor environmental quality, the overall financial and environmental performance of the property can be significantly improved.


For starters, gas and electric costs in deregulated States can typically be driven down by up to 20% through competitive pricing from wholesale energy providers.   A Cost Segregation Study and the EPA 179D Federal Tax Deduction can lower federal tax liability by thousands if not hundreds of thousands of dollars.   There is a cost for obtaining these tax reductions but such costs can be folded into the financing of an LED lighting upgrade that is typically called for in older underperforming buildings.  And with some additional simple green building measures, a building can qualify for a reduced cost Green Building Property Insurance Master Policy Program that provides $500 million per incident protection, $10 million in green upgrade coverage, and overall insurance premium savings of up to 20%.


Presenters will highlight the challenges and opportunities with building an operationalized and scalable enterprise level community solar project that puts the customer at the center of the business model.  The panel will explore sales and marketing, personnel, training, customer service processes, platforms and budgeting issues inherent in building an effective community solar project. The business case for investment in enterprise community solar projects is supported by lower rates of electricity for consumers and promising returns on investments

The introduction of the federal Section 1603 Treasury Grant Program as a substitute for a federal Investment Tax Credit in 2009 created a change in the form of ownership for most commercial solar systems. Prior to the implementation of the treasury grant, which covers 30 percent of the cost of solar, most commercial systems were owned, operated and maintained by third-party investors with the tax appetites to monetize the tax credit. These investors typically sold the power back to the host entities at reduced rates under a long-term contract called a Power Purchase Agreement, or PPA. In addition to requiring no capital outlay, the benefits for the host entities included a fixed rate, a smaller carbon footprint and a visible renewable asset. After the implementation of the Treasury Grant Program, the form of ownership shifted, with the majority of commercial building owners taking advantage of the immediate payback offered by the grant to install and operate the systems themselves. With the grant reverting to a tax credit in 2012, however, we can expect a shift back to third-party ownership.

A close look at one crucial type of growth finance for CleanTech companies—venture capital (VC) investment—suggests that early-stage CleanTech companies and entrepreneurs are facing increasing challenges in accessing investment and VC dollars.  From a growing body of new evidence it is clear that CleanTech VC activity is changing in ways that are requiring new commercialization strategies. Along with a significant drop in VC investment in CleanTech, investments have concentrated in a few technology areas, in more mature firms, and in just a few metropolitan areas, raising concerns about the narrow and spotty focus of CleanTech VC.  What is sorely needed are new and more diverse approaches at finding and funding new great CleanTech and Smart Building companies.


Organizations today have an extraordinary opportunity to transform the customer experience. While social media, mobile, Big Data, and cloud technology play a key role, organizations must look at transformational innovation regarding customer experiences to attract customers, drive profits, and improve loyalty. Learn how to improve customer interactions and transform customer experiences by building your interaction strategy with the nine C’s of engagement.

This session examines how companies can rapidly grow their sales team and drive effectiveness by harnessing the power of gamification to motivate salespeople to achieve throughout all areas of the sales cycle. Key takeaways include how to use gamification as a tool to close the gap between marketing and sales teams; best practices for designing a gamification platform specific to the needs of your individual team members and their various strengths and weaknesses; and how to streamline individual goals with higher-level priorities using gamification

Since the NY-Sun Program’s successful launch over a year ago the amount of solar in New York has tripled, surpassing the interim goal of the program (which was to double solar in New York from 2011 to 2012). A total of 190 MW of customer-sited solar capacity—enough to power over 34,000 homes—has either been installed or was under development at the end of last thanks to this program.

While debate continues on the role of utility-scale photovoltaic systems in the nation’s energy mix, the small to mid-sized commercial solar segment has witnessed explosive growth, particularly on flat-roofed commercial buildings that are ideally suited to the deployment of solar. New Jersey, for instance, where strong solar incentives and high energy prices have contributed to a robust local solar industry, has now outpaced California as the nation’s top commercial solar market, thanks to a high concentration of such buildings. In addition to reducing electricity costs and providing a hedge against future rate increases, distributed or “behind-the-meter” solar also has the advantage of generating power at the site where it is used, thus increasing energy security and diminishing demand for utility infrastructure. The U.S. growth pattern in commercial solar is mimicking what has occurred in Europe, most notably in Germany, the world’s solar leader, where the German Solar Energy Industry Association estimated in 2009 that 80 percent of capacity was roof-based.

This two-part presentation series cuts through the social hype and informs participants how to use social media to create a valuable strategy for implementing an effective outsourced sales and marketing team that can produces results . In Part 1, you will be walked through the CleanTech and Smart Building Economy Sales and marketing outsourcing strategy and digs into the people, process, and technology that companies need to establish to fit their culture and Drive Results.

Part 2 begins with a description of the emerging challenges and opportunities in creating independent sales and marketing teams.  Explore industry trends including the use social media, mobile communication devices, gamification, Big Data analysis and insight.