Complex Thinking for Complicated Times
Grass-roots advocates and activists have been instrumental in raising awareness and informing people about the positive role of nuclear energy in mitigating change. Who are they, what are they trying to achieve, and how are they going about it? In this session we’ll meet some of the leading grass-roots nuclear advocates and activists and learn about their methodologies, successes, lessons-learned, and how governments and the nuclear industry can best promote the benefits of nuclear energy, and support grass-roots nuclear advocacy and activism in the process.
Join us on Wednesday October 21 at 10:00 EDT for what's sure to be a lively and informative panel discussion among leading global nuclear advocates and activists.
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Neil Alexander is a seasoned nuclear industry executive with experience in leading commercial organizations, industry associations and academic institutions in all aspects of nuclear technology including SMRs, isotope production and decommissioning and waste management. He includes leading the Sylvia Fedoruk Canadian Centre for Nuclear Innovation and the Organization of Canadian Nuclear Industries amongst his career responsibilities.As the principal consultant of his company, Bucephalus Consulting, he is using his experience and expertise to advise on the successful deployment of SMRs with a focus enabling success by making the ground fertile. An early proponent of SMRs he has written and presented extensively on the issues and is an active contributor to LinkedIn discussion platform.Neil is a graduate of the University of Birmingham in the UK and has a PhD in metallurgy and materials science. He lives in southern Ontario.
Nuclear Advocate Meredith Angwin is devoted to supporting clean, safe, affordable nuclear energy. She also works to protect the interests of electricity consumers through research and writing about decision making on the grid.
Meredith holds an M.S. in physical chemistry from the University of Chicago. In her long research career, she was inventor on several patents in pollution control for fossil fuels, and did extensive work in corrosion control for nuclear plants. Meredith was one of the first women to be a project manager at EPRI (Electric Power Research Institute), beginning with the renewables group, and moving eventually to the nuclear group. Later, she founded a small consulting company that consulted on pollution control and water chemistry for fossil, nuclear and renewable power plants, and natural gas pipelines. The company’s clients included local and international utilities. Currently, she is concerned with grid governance, as grid after grid slides away from reliability and toward rolling blackouts. She participates in the Consumer Liaison Group of her local grid operator. Angwin's first book on nuclear advocacy was "Campaigning for Clean Air: Strategies for Pro-Nuclear Advocacy." Her most recent book is "Shorting the Grid: The Hidden Fragility of Our Electric Grid."
Eric G. Meyer is the Founder and Executive Director of Generation Atomic, a nuclear advocacy non-profit. He started out pursuing a career in professional singing, but after hearing about the promise of advanced nuclear reactors and having his car swept away by a 500 year flood, he decided to devote his life to protecting and expanding the use of atomic energy to fight climate change. He worked as an organizer on several political, union, and issue campaigns while in graduate school for applied public policy, taking time off to attend the climate talks in Paris and sing opera parodies about nuclear power and climate change. Meyer founded Generation Atomic in late 2016. Since then he's worked to shift the narrative around nuclear energy by creating unique social media videos (like a music video at the Experimental Breeder Reactor), training nuclear supporters to have more effective nuclear conversations, and organizing unforgettable events. He’s been featured in two feature documentaries for his work, and so far has only been kicked out of one climate march for supporting nuclear energy
Myrto Tripathi is the founder and chair of the NGO Voices of Nuclear, made only of volunteers, whose objective is to position nuclear as key for a successful energy transition in the public debate and in public policies. It seeks to reframe the debate on nuclear energy on its contributions to societal and environmental world stakes rather than on its inherent characteristics and nature, and to feed this debate with positive evidence.
As part of her expertise as a senior professional advocate on energy and climate issues, Myrto also participates in several other volunteer projects aimed at mobilizing science and business in the preservation of the environment and against climate change, including as Director of the Global Panel Chemical Pollution of the Environment project, whose objective is to mobilize scientists in order to map chemical pollution in the world for the use of decision-makers, following the example of the IPCC.
Ms. Tripathi was previously Climate policy director within the Global Compact France (representation of the Global Compact UN in Paris), a role that she held on the road to the Paris Agreement and a couple of years thereafter. Her professional commitment to fighting climate change began in 2014, following a 10-year tenure at AREVA (former nuclear utilities world supplier), where she acted as Offer Director in charge of answering and negotiating the calls for bid of the EPR nuclear reactor to export markets, in particular next to India and Sweden, and in other operational positions from chief of staff of the mining, conversion and enrichment business to market strategy director for fuel design and manufacturing.
On November 6th, 2020 Myrto will release her first book "Battle for the Climate: Victory Lies Within Us." With twenty years of experience in the field and dedicated reflection, she exposes the levers of confusion that prevent us from effectively responding to the climate crisis when we actually do have, at hand, the means and capacities to do it.
She holds an Industrial Engineering degree from the North Carolina State University (United States) and another from France’s leading business school HEC. In 2013, she was selected by the Prime Minister of France’s office to attend the Institute of Defence High Studies 66th national session for high ranked professionals. She is married and has two daughters of 2 and 4 years old.
Carl is a software engineer/developer and a lifelong environmental activist. He grew up not far from Chicago, the “greenest” city in the U.S. (90% of Chicago’s electricity is generated from carbon-free nuclear energy). As a teenager, he canvassed door to door on the first Earth Day, warning neighbors of the perils of air and water pollution.
Spending his formative years in proximity to the birthplace of the Manhattan Project, Argonne National Laboratory, Fermi National Laboratory (FERMILAB) and other celebrated institutions made an impression on him early in life. “Nuclear plants are like wallpaper in Illinois – they don’t stand out. They don’t smoke, they don’t melt down, they just generate clean electricity 24/7/365,” he says. “When I came to California to attend USC in 1975, I was amazed so many Californians were terrified of them. But I realized their fear was based on a lack of familiarity – and in terms of environmental activism, education would be my focus.”
Carl has also been an activist for electric transportation. In 2007 he converted a Ford Aspire to electric power, and aided Nissan Motors in testing and development of the Nissan Leaf EV. “Electric vehicles powered by nuclear electricity generate no carbon emissions at all. With the challenge of climate change before us, that should be our goal.”
Sean Wagner is a Materials Engineer from Alberta Canada who decided to get into nuclear advocacy after a friend said that if he was going to ramble about nuclear for hours he might as well do it where more people could benefit. Two years later Sean now runs Alberta Nuclear Nucleus Ltd, a not for profit company dedicated to education about topics fundamental to the nuclear conversation and advocacy for expanding more conversations about topics such as climate, economy, and employment to include nuclear so that we can truly come to the best solutions possible for all three.