A one-day workshop created to help private companies, government
and nonprofit organizations save money in Texas' increasingly
volatile energy market was held March 24 at Texas A&M University's
College of Architecture.
Titled "Cutting Energy Bills in Texas: How to Develop an
Energy Risk Management Strategy," the course was held in
the Langford Architecture Center Auditorium on the Texas A&M
The energy workshop was designed for building owners, managers
and others responsible for electric and natural gas budgets in
commercial, industrial, government and institutional buildings.
It was also intended for anyone interested in gaining a better
understanding of recent changes in Texas energy markets and ways
modern risk management principles can be applied to reduce energy
costs and risks associated with today's energy markets.
"Sharp increases in electricity prices are substantially
impacting commercial, government and institutional utility customers
in Texas," said workshop developer Jerry Jackson, an associate
professor in Texas A&M's Department of Construction Science
who has a doctorate in economics.
"In response," he continued, "many Texas retail electricity
providers are providing new 'pricing products' that offer significant
savings while incorporating various levels of risk tied to
energy market conditions. At the same time," he said, "natural
gas prices have increased dramatically and exhibit unusual
volatility. Forecasts indicate that conditions will persist
for the foreseeable future, creating energy budgeting and planning
Jackson, who has 30 years experience as an energy expert, is
also a faculty affiliate with the Texas A&M Energy Systems
Laboratory. He has consulted on energy matters with more than
90 companies and government agencies and his clients include
20 Fortune 500 companies, national research laboratories, state
agencies and the U.S. Department of Energy. He has assisted
Texas retail electricity providers in the development of electricity-pricing
products and has provided cost analyses for utility customers.
"Workshop participants will gain information on energy pricing
and efficiency options that can help them start saving money
on energy bills," Jackson said. "They will also learn
how to develop energy risk management strategies specific to
their organizations using a process that can continue to reduce
energy costs and protect against volatile energy markets in