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Worcester's Clean Energy and Green Economy Future Come to Life at Community Summit

Worcester, MA (September 19, 2011) - National Grid and the City of Worcester today kicked off "Green Today, Growth Tomorrow" at the DCU Center in Worcester, MA. The two-day Summit will be held September 19 and 20, 2011 and is designed to build upon Worcester’s successes in green energy technologies and to create a clean, green economic future for the city.

Using an extremely creative, highly interactive approach to distilling what a green and clean energy future looks like for Worcester, the event gives voice to 300 local residents and stakeholders who will help shape the city’s future economic base, including helping to develop National Grid’s revised Smart Grid proposal that will include 15,000 Worcester customers and will be submitted to the MA Department of Public Utilities this December. The hope is that what is learned in the Worcester pilot will help inform what is possible for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Keynote speakers include the visionary Peter Senge, Ph.D., founder of the Society for Organizational Learning and author of The Fifth Discipline: The Art and Practice of The Learning Organization as well as The Necessary Revolution, and Van Jones, award-winning pioneer in human rights and the clean-energy economy. Massachusetts Congressman James McGovern; Worcester Mayor Joe O’Brien and Worcester City Manager Michael O’Brien are participating in the Summit along with the Department of Public Utilities and the Office of the Massachusetts Attorney General.

According to Marcy Reed, president of National Grid Massachusetts, the Green Today, Growth Tomorrow event uniquely positions the city and the company to have a dialogue with the community and focus on its present and future energy needs.

"The energy system is a central, vital part of a community, its businesses and its residents and is the enabler for so many essential aspects of daily life today and tomorrow. This summit is the perfect forum for us to learn first-hand what energy options residential and business customers want and need, and how they want to interact with us," Reed said. "Together we will dream big and create innovative solutions that allow customers to decide how they want to manage energy and energy information in a very different way, and work alongside the City of Worcester to grow its green energy and economy future."

Worcester City Manager Michael O’Brien said, "Our great City is and has been a City of entrepreneurship and innovation. This is a great next step to make certain that Worcester is the place for green energy solutions, a model of energy efficiency, a hub of green businesses and jobs and a magnet for cutting-edge research in conservation technology and renewable energy sources."

Facilitated by David Cooperrider, Ph.D., inventor of the Appreciative Inquiry (AI) process and chairman of the Department of Organizational Behavior at the Weatherhead School of Management, the Summit will employ AI techniques using existing strengths in green and sustainable technologies as the basis for future planning and growth. To get there, participants will take a creative, interactive journey and arrive at what a green, clean, smart energy future looks like. They will experience a brainstorming phase, a dreaming phase and a design phase during the Summit, and literally will produce prototype designs for green initiatives and projects that can be implemented in the future.

For more information on the Green Today, Growth Tomorrow agenda, keynote speakers and Appreciative Inquiry, please visit www.green2growth.com.

National Grid is an international energy delivery company. In the U.S., National Grid delivers electricity to approximately 3.3 million customers in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Rhode Island, and manages the electricity network on Long Island under an agreement with the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA). It is the largest distributor of natural gas in the northeastern U.S., serving approximately 3.4 million customers in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Rhode Island. National Grid also owns over 4,000 megawatts of contracted electricity generation that provides power to over one million LIPA customers. Visit National Grid at www.nationalgridus.com.

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