GEOGRAPHY 2050 – 2018










Highlight Reel – Geography 2050: Powering Our Future Planet
Missed out on the Symposium? Check out the highlight reel!
*See full plenary session videos in our Geography 2050 (2018) Symposium channel.

Thursday, 15 November 2018

Alfred Lerner Hall, Columbia University


Welcome and Introduction & Symposium Overview
Dr. John Konarski, Chief Executive Officer, American Geographical Society
Dr. Marie Price, President, American Geographical Society
Dr. Christopher Tucker, Chair, American Geographical Society

Plenary Session: The Energy Context
Moderator: Dr. Amy Glasmeier, Professor of Economic Geography and Regional Planning, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Speakers: Mr. John Hofmeister, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Citizens for Affordable Energy
Mr. John Mingé, Former Chairman and President, BP America, Inc.

Plenary Session: Energy Policies And Energy Futures
Moderator: Dr. Lee Schwartz, The Geographer, U.S. Department of State
Speakers: Mr. Oscar Ankunda, Energy Specialist, USAID-Uganda
Ms. Kristin Mayes, Professor of Practice, School for the Future of Innovation in Society, Arizona State University
Dr. Jatin Nathwani, Ontario Research Chair in Public Policy for Sustainable Energy, University of Waterloo
Dr. Sonia Yeh, Professor of Transport and Energy Systems, Department of Earth, Space and Environment, Chalmers University of Technology

Keynote Address – Mr. Robert Cardillo, Director of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency
Mr. Robert Cardillo, Director of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency

Special Plenary Session: The Global Reach and Geographical Implications of China’s Energy Demand
Moderator: Dr. Marie Price, President, American Geographical Society
Speakers: Dr. Gary Dirks, Director, Julie Ann Wrigley Global Institute of Sustainability, Arizona State University
Dr. Yushan Duan, Professor, School of Geographic Sciences, East China Normal University
Mr. David Sandalow, Inaugural Fellow, Center on Global Energy Policy, Columbia University

Lightning Presentations – Thursday, November 15, 2018 
Moderator: Dr. Christopher Tucker, Chair, American Geographical Society
Presenters: Dr. Sean Ahearn, Director, Center for Advanced Research of Spatial Information, Hunter College, “Solar New York: A Solar Application for the State of New York”
Mr. Anthony Bevacqua, PhD Candidate, Clean Energy and Sustainability Center, Montclair State University, “Spatial Economics of Solar Photovoltaics in New Jersey”
Ms. Mariana Cerca, Master’s Candidate, Humboldt University, “Sustainability Deviations Between North and South: The Social Dimension of Bioenergy Systems”
Mr. Ben Hoen, Research Scientist, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, “The U.S. Wind Turbine Database: Watching U.S. Wind Energy Growth Quarter by Quarter”
Dr. Camelia Kantor, Director of Academic Programs, United States Geospatial Intelligence Foundation, “The Downside of Modern Energy Access”
Ms. Selene Lawrence, Deputy Director of Community Development, Sullivan Solar Power, “California: Leading the Renewable Energy Charge”
Dr. Stanislav Martinat, Research Fellow, Cardiff University, “Developing Biogas Energy in Rural Areas: A Perspective From Central Europe”
Ms. Elise Mazur, Research Analyst, World Resources Institute, “Exploring Energy Access Through Mapping”
Dr. Thomas Ptak, Assistant Professor, and Mr. Alexander Nagel, Graduate Student, University of Idaho, “Community Solar”
Mr. Michael Terner, Google Partner Practice Support, Thermopylae Sciences + Technology, “Earth’s Eye View to Support Energy Planning”
Mr. Dean Wise, Principal, Dean Wise LLC, “The Geography of Wind Energy”
Mr. Isaac Zaworski, Vice President, Vricon, “How X, Y, Z, and T Fuels the Future of Energy”

Special credit to AGS Geography Teacher Fellow, Daniel Whalen, for providing some of the footage in this video. Visit his YouTube channel ( to see more geography-related videos!”

Friday, 16 November 2018

Low Library, Columbia University


Plenary Session: Emerging Energy Technologies
Moderator: Dr.Nuala Cowan, Disaster Risk Management Consultant, The World Bank
Speakers: Gen. Richard Devereaux, Executive Vice President, Viziv Technologies
Mr. Christofer Mowry, Chief Executive Officer, General Fusion
*Mr. Frank Prautzsch, President, Velocity Technology Partners, LLC
Dr. Kevan Weaver, Technical Lead of Reactor Systems Safety, Idaho National Laboratory
* Mr. Prautzsch’s title is NOT “Reporter For Channel 5 New” *

Welcome, Geography 2050: Powering Our Future Planet
Dr. Alexander Halliday, Director, The Earth Institute, Columbia University

Plenary Session: Geospatial Technologies and Energy
Moderator: Dr. Jerome Dobson, President Emeritus, American Geographical Society
Speakers: Mr. Rodney Buhrsmith, Business Development, East View Geospatial
Dr. Gregory Koeln, Technical Fellow, Radiant Solutions
Mr. Bill Meehan, Director, Utility Solutions, Esri
Dr. Kumar Navulur, Director of Next Generation Products in Labs, DigitalGlobe
Mr. Geoff Zeiss, Principal, Between the Poles

Plenary Session: Social Dimensions of Energy Access
Moderator: Dr. Wesley Herche, Associate Director of Research, Global Security Initiative, Arizona State University
Speakers: Ms. Bidtah Becker, Executive Director, Navajo Nation Division of Natural Resources
Mr. Peter Fiekowsky, Founder, Foundation for Climate Restoration
Ms. Elizabeth Monoian & Mr. Robert Ferry, Founding Directors, Land Art Generator Initiative (LAGI)

Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) Luncheon Keynote Address – Friday, November 16, 2018
Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI)

Plenary Session: Environmental Consequences Of Energy Supply And Demand
Moderator: Dr. Wesley Reisser, Senior Foreign Affairs Officer, U.S. Department of State
Speakers: Dr. Robin Leichenko, Chair, Department of Geography, Rutgers University
Dr. Diana Liverman, Regents’ Professor, University of Arizona
Mr. Kevin Seegmiller, Director of Program Management, Delta Environmental Sciences
Ms. Joanna D. Underwood, Founder and Board Member, Energy Vision

Dr. Diana Liverman Presents on the IPPC 1.5 degrees report
Plenary Session: Environmental Consequences of Supply and Demand
Dr. Diana Liverman – IPPC 1.5 degrees report

American Geographical Society (AGS) Honors And Awards Ceremony
Prof. Andrew Blowers – Alexander and Ilse Melamid Medal
Dr. Susanna B, Hecht – David Livingstone Medal
Mr. Andrew Frazier – Honorary Fellow

Plenary Session: Lightning Presentations – Friday, November 16, 2018
Moderator: Dr. Christopher Tucker, Chair, American Geographical Society
Presenters: Mr. Jacob Bethem, PhD Candidate, Arizona State University, “Universal Ethics for the U.S. Energy Transition”
Dr. Bohumil Frantal, Senior Scientist, Institute of Geonics, The Czech Academy of Sciences, “Repowering Wind Farms: Challenges and Obstacles as Experienced in Central Europe”
Dr. Enrique Lanz Oca, Adjunct Assistant Professor, The Pratt Institute, “Climate Change, Dam Removals, and the Transformation of the Energy Landscape”
Mr. Eric Lyttek, PhD Candidate, Montclair University, “Place-based Bioenergy Assessment in New Jersey Associated with Ash”
Ms. Molly Seltzer, Founder and Chief Storyteller, Electric America, “Changes in Electricity Production: Impacts on the Economy, Landscape, and Quality of Life”

Plenary Session: Energy Adaptation Strategies
Moderator: Dr. Ellen Morris, Program Lead, University Partnerships, National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Speakers: Dr. Marilyn Brown, Regents’ and Brooks Byers Professor of Sustainable Systems, Georgia Institute of Technology
Dr. Vasilis Fthenakis, Founder and Director, Center for Life Cycle Analysis, Columbia University
Mr. Raffi Garabedian, Chief Technology Officer, First Solar, Inc.
Ms. Susan Sloan, Vice President of State Affairs, American Wind Energy Association

A Prospectus For The Future – Geography 2050: Powering Our Future Planet
Dr. Martin Pasqualetti, Symposium Chair, American Geographical Society
A Prospectus For The Future
Dr. Marie Price, President, American Geographical Society
Dr. Wes Reisser, Senior Foreign Affairs Officer, U.S. Department of State
Dr. Christopher Tucker, Chair, American Geographical Society