The National Governors Association Center for Best Practices (NGA Center) facilitated the participation of six Governors’ Energy Advisors in the 2023 Legislative Energy Horizons Institute (LEHI) cohort, organized jointly by the Pacific Northwest Economic Region (PNWER), the University of Idaho, the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), and the NGA Center. For 13 years, the LEHI program has convened diverse groups of energy policymakers from across the United States, Canada, and tribal nations for a rigorous, comprehensive curriculum on the fundamentals of the energy system, regulatory, financial, and planning challenges facing energy policymakers, and the current North American energy sector. The 60-hour program is split into two sessions, first at the Pacific Northwest National Lab (PNNL) in Richland, WA and secondly in Washington, D.C.
Among the forty-person cohort of state legislators, Canadian ministers, and policymakers were six Governors Energy Advisors from Alabama, New York, Nevada, Ohio, Utah, and Virginia. Topics covered in the program included:
- Energy 101: electric power generation, natural gas, petroleum, nuclear energy, and renewables
- Utilities, public power, and energy markets
- Cybersecurity and threats to energy infrastructure
- Next generation energy technologies
- The U.S. and Canadian energy partnership
All six advisors were awarded a certificate in Energy Policy Planning from the University of Idaho for their participation. NGA is a proud sponsor of the LEHI program, alongside other major partners including the U.S. Department of Energy, Pacific Northwest Economic Region, National Conference of State Legislatures, University of Idaho, and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.
In addition to classroom education, participants benefited from hands-on education with tours of the Ice Harbor Dam Hydroelectric Power Generation Site, the Brookville Smart Energy Bus Depot and a microgrid in Montgomery County, MD. All six advisors were awarded a certificate in Energy Policy Planning from the University of Idaho at a graduation ceremony hosted by the Canadian Embassy in Washington, DC. This is the third year in which NGA supported Governors’ office participation in LEHI, facilitating in-depth, collaborative energy education for a cohort of policy makers spanning political parties, geographies, and branches of state government.