Thu, 12/10/2020 - 4:00pm - 5:30pm
Welcome and Introduction (5 mins)
Moderator: Bahareh van Boekhold, Green Building United Board Member, Delaware Community Co-Chair
How can community solar benefit Delaware? (15 mins)
Speaker: Dustyn Thompson, Volunteer & Community Outreach Coordinator, Delaware Chapter of the Sierra Club
Why does Delaware’s current community solar law prohibit its proliferation and what changes are needed to make it effective? (15 mins)
Speaker: Laurel Passera, Policy Director, Coalition for Community Solar Access
What can Delaware learn from community solar program successes in our region? (15 mins)
Speaker: Pari Kasotia, Mid-Atlantic Director, Vote Solar
Q&A (20 mins)
Panelists and Dale Davis, President, CMI Solar & Electric, President Delaware Solar Energy Coalition
Wrap-up (5 mins)
Want to become a member of Green Building United? Join today!
Bahareh is a skilled sustainability professional with diverse experience in energy efficiency, green buildings, sustainability, and climate resiliency and mitigation planning. She has worked in private, public, academia, and non-profit sectors to address some of the most pressing energy, sustainability, and environmental issues in the State of Delaware. As a program manager with Applied Energy Group, she manages portfolios of programs and support design, delivery, and implementation of energy efficiency programs. In her previous role as the Principal Planner with the Delaware Division of Energy and Climate, she led statewide building energy codes adoption, development of critical energy efficiency policies, and state’s initiatives to advance high-performance buildings, address climate mitigation and adaptation. She is an active member of the Delaware community of the Green Building United and chairs the Sustainability Planning Steering committee of City of Newark, Delaware, where She lives with her husband and their two children.
Dustyn Thompson, Volunteer & Community Outreach Coordinator, joined the Delaware Chapter of the Sierra Club in July 2019. He has worked in the Delaware political world since 2015, helping to organize a prominent progressive organization in Delaware, Delaware United. Dustyn believes that Delaware can become a leader in the fight for more renewable energy and environmental justice through collaboration and coalition building. By working together and listening to and engaging with the communities often left out of the renewable energy conversation, we can create a more equitable and just vision for our state's energy future.
Laurel Passera is the Policy Director for the Coalition for Community Solar Access (CCSA). In this role she has led CCSA’s efforts in a number of states over the past three years, including Illinois. Prior to joining CCSA, Laurel managed the Interstate Renewable Energy Council’s Connecting to the Grid program and served as a policy analyst for the DSIRE project. Following grad school, Laurel spent three years in the Peace Corps in West Africa, working as an ecotourism agent for Senegal’s national parks.
Pari Kasotia is an energy policy expert with 10+ years of experience in the clean energy space. Currently, she serves as the Mid-Atlantic Director for Vote Solar where she advocates for equity-focused solar policies. Pari is the lead architect and advocate for the NJ Shines campaign that calls for bold targets and funding to increase solar and storage access in low-income and environmental justice communities. She was instrumental in providing grassroots advocacy and outreach support for the successful passage of MD Clean Energy Jobs Act in 2019. In 2018, Pari played an integral role in the creation of the Community Solar Pilot Program in New Jersey under the Clean Energy Act of 2018. Prior to Vote Solar, Pari served as the Deputy Director of The Solar Foundation where she provided organizational leadership and oversight and was the lead author of the first-ever US Solar Industry Diversity Study.
Pari is among kWh Analytics’ #Solar100 thought leaders and is listed in Renewable Energy World’s Solar 40 under 40 Professionals and Midwest Energy News 40 under 40 Emerging Clean Energy Leaders. She serves as a Board Member of Maryland, DC, Delaware, and Virginia’s Solar Energy Industries Association (MDV-SEIA) and Women’s Council for Energy and Environment as well as Advisory Council member of the Maryland Clean Energy Center.
Previously, Pari held numerous leadership roles at the State of Iowa’s Energy Office where she successfully administered multi-million-dollar clean energy and energy efficiency programs. Pari is currently pursuing a Master of Environmental Management degree from Yale School of the Environment and holds two Master’s degrees; an MBA and an MPA. She has a BA in Environmental Policy and Politics.