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City of Tucson Welcomes Energy Conference
by Carsceal Turner
US / Africa Energy Ministers Conference

Mayor Walkup and iNet News Team Members
Photo: Allan E. Baer
Tucson, AZ •• Dec. 13, 1999 •• SolarQuest® iNet News Service •• Representatives from over 40 countries from the continent of Africa converge on the city of Tucson from December 13th through the 15th for the U.S. – Africa Energy Ministers Conference held at the Tucson Convention Center.

The conference is being called a partnership for the twenty-first century and will focus on issues related to the financing of energy infrastructure projects, policies and regulations that encourage investment and energy market development, energy technologies for rural economic development and climate change options.

Mayor Robert E. Walkup was very excited that Tucson was chosen as the site for the conference. Mayor Walkup speculated that perhaps the relationship between Tucson’s history and the issues of the conference are the reason Tucson was chosen.

“Tucson’s community is very energy conscious being that it is located in the desert,” he said. “This conference is a chance to learn from countries who have suffered more than us.”

Tucson is not without it’s own conservation problems. The population is expected to grow to 1.2 million in the next ten years and something needs to be done now. Will the city be prepared for the increase in population? Tucson is presently taking a productive step in conservation efforts with water, energy and economic development. These efforts include a possible fee schedule designed to minimize the consumption of water. The mayor believes that the conservation efforts will be the key to the city becoming self-sustaining and perhaps even more marketable and appealing to large businesses and corporations.

Several topics of the conference such as creative financing for dispersed energy sources, policies and regulations that encourage investment and energy technologies for rural economic development should be beneficial to Tucson and other cities as well as the African Ministers.

“There will be wide coverage from the media on this conference.” said Mayor Walkup. “Because of the conference, Tucson will have a chance to understand what is happening elsewhere in terms of energy and conservation.”

The conference promises to be an excellent exchange of ideas and philosophies on a common goal…energy usage and conservation.

by Carsceal M. Turner with assistance from Mitchell Mock and Mayard Williams of the iNet News Team.

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