CoBank Launches Power Plays Podcast Focused on U.S. Energy Sector

CoBank, a cooperative bank serving agribusinesses, rural infrastructure providers and Farm Credit associations throughout the United States, announced the launch of Power Plays, a podcast series dedicated to the U.S. power and energy sector. 

Hosted by Teri Viswanath, lead energy economist with CoBank’s Knowledge Exchange, Power Playsguests include top energy and environmental innovators, policy makers and rural electric cooperative executives for timely insights and in-depth market analysis. 

“U.S. power suppliers are facing a very dynamic set of market conditions fueled by shifts in policy, declining costs of new technology and consumer requirements,” said Viswanath. “All of these factors conspire against a business-as-usual pace to energy transition in 2021. The podcast provides a platform for us to connect listeners with a cross-section of thought leaders across the energy sector as we navigate industry issues and developments.”  

The newest episode of Power Plays features Simon Price, CEO of Exawatt, who shares insights on the rapid pace of solar innovation and forces that will drive continued cost declines over the next decade. Price is globally recognized for his technical understanding of all facets of the PV value chain, from materials supply and manufacturing to downstream project development.  

The March episode featured Steve Vavrik, CEO of Broad Reach Power, an independent power producer at the forefront of battery storage development in Texas. Storage developers had largely steered clear of the ERCOT market in recent years, but Vavrik explains why storage development is increasingly critical for managing shifts in power supply and demand.  

Dr. Gary Dorris, CEO of Ascend Analytics, and Christian Powell, energy regulatory affairs director at Pedernales Electric Cooperative, visited with Viswanath in February for an episode covering grid-tied batteries, the economics of stand-alone battery storage options and renewable energy pairing opportunities. 

The inaugural episode of Power Plays featured Anna Shpitsberg, who shared insights into what's motivating U.S. companies to voluntarily invest billions of dollars in new wind and solar projects. Shpitsberg was then serving as research and analysis director with IHS Markit. She is now deputy assistant secretary for energy transformation at the U.S. Department of State. 

Listen to available episodes and subscribe to Power Plays here