Renewable Natural Gas (May 01-02)

Renewable Natural Gas (RNG) technologies present an opportunity for our members to produce a renewable product from organic material to their end use customers. Join professionals responsible for RNG efforts at their company as we discuss a wide range of strategic topics from policies, regulatory framework, and economics to gas quality, and operational issues related to these efforts.

General Details

  • Program Chair(s)
  • Randy Gabe, Vice President, Gas Resources, Southwest Gas

    • Program Location
    • Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver
    • 791 West Georgia Street
      Vancouver, BC V6C 2T4
    • Who Should Attend
      • Senior Mangement responsible for RNG efforts at their utility
      • RNG Subject Matter Experts
      • Government Affairs and Regulatory professionals within the utility
  • Registration Options
  • Member: $399 USD

    Registration includes dinner on Tuesday, catered breakfast and lunch at the meeting on Wednesday, all meeting materials, and industry tour.

  • General Cancellation Policy
  • Due to contractual obligations, cancellations received 15 business days prior to the program will receive a full refund. Cancellations received 6 to 14 business days prior to the event will receive a refund, less a $100 administrative fee. No shows and last minute cancellations, 5 business days prior to the event or less, will be responsible for the full registration fee. Substitutions from your organization for the same event are always welcome.
  • Participation Policy
  • Western Energy Institute programs and events are open to energy companies (including gas production and electric generation, gas and electric transmission and gas and electric distribution utilities). Select programs and events are open to energy industry product and service suppliers. Programs and events are closed to all media representatives and to the general public.
  • For more information contact Kevin Sullivan, Director of Member Engagement at (971) 255-4973.


Tuesday, May 1, 2018

1:00 PM - 1:30 PM

Welcome and Introductions
Facilitator(s): Randy Gabe, Vice President, Gas Resources, Southwest Gas Corporation

A welcome to the first Renewable Natural Gas program followed by introductions.

1:30 PM - 3:00 PM

Western Perspectives
Facilitator(s): Sarah Smith, Director, NGT, Regional LNG and RNG, FortisBC
Speaker(s): Nate Taylor, Product Development and Strategy Manager, Southern California Gas Company, Bill Donahue, Manager, Natural Gas Resources, Puget Sound Energy, Anna Chittum, Business Development Segment Manager, NW Natural, Paul Blomerus, Clean Energy Research Centre Advisor and Independent Consultant, UBC Clean Energy Research Centre, Paul Wieringa, Executive Director, Energy Policy and Regulation, Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum, Bill Donahue, Manager, Natural Gas Resources, Puget Sound Energy

Our panel discusses the state of the union on Renewable Natural Gas policy and standards in the Western US and Canada.

2:45 PM - 4:00 PM

Western US RNG Perspective

A panel discussion on RNG perspective from around the Western US from Southern California Gas, Puget Sound Energy, and others.

3:00 PM - 3:30 PM

Networking Break

3:30 PM - 5:00 PM

Successes and Challenges Roundtable
Facilitator(s): Randy Gabe, Vice President, Gas Resources, Southwest Gas Corporation

Now that we have a state of the union on our region, the conversation turns to what each of our member utilities are doing around RNG. This roundtable will allow members to explore current projects, successes and challenges that they are facing.

6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Hosted Networking Dinner

Located at Rogue Kitchen: 200 Burrard St, Vancouver, BC

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

8:00 AM - 8:30 AM

Hosted Breakfast

8:30 AM - 9:30 AM

Policy and Regulatory Roundtable
Facilitator(s): Randy Gabe, Vice President, Gas Resources, Southwest Gas Corporation

Discussions will address: • What policies are needed to support development of the RNG market? • Should utilities have a renewable portfolio standard for RNG? • How does RNG fit into state policies for reducing carbon? • Who sets the agenda? Legislature or PUC? • How to best incorporate the relatively high cost of RNG into core portfolio? • Utility investment in RNG processing equipment. Should utilities take on the developer role? • Justification of capital costs to connect RNG producers. • Standard gas quality specs for western region?

9:30 AM - 10:00 AM

New Technologies and Approaches
Speaker(s): Greg Caldwell, Senior Manager, Research and Innovation, ATCO Pipelines

10:00 AM - 10:30 AM

Networking Break

10:30 AM - 11:00 AM

Market for Renewable Fuel
Speaker(s): Ralph Epling, Managing Director, IGI Resources, Inc.

11:00 AM - 11:45 AM

Approaches to Effective Marketing
Speaker(s): Jenelle De La Cour, Product Marketing and Relationship Manager, FortisBC

11:45 AM - 12:30 PM

Hosted Lunch

Attendees will eat lunch and discuss any burning topics that remain.

12:30 PM - 4:00 PM

Tour of FortisBC Biogas Facility

*Sign up for this optional tour during registration

4:00 PM - 4:00 PM


Hotel + Travel

  • Reservation Instructions
  • Please contact the hotel directly at 1-800-441-1414 to reserve your room. Identify yourself as being with Western Energy Institute to receive a special rate of $279 CAD/night or book online using the link below. This rate is guaranteed until April 17, 2018 or until the WEI room block is full.

Meet The Speakers

Paul Blomerus

UBC Clean Energy Research Centre

Clean Energy Research Centre Advisor and Independent Consultant

Nate Taylor

Southern California Gas Company

Product Development and Strategy Manager

Anna Chittum

NW Natural

Business Development Segment Manager

Sarah Smith


Director, NGT, Regional LNG and RNG

Paul Wieringa

Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum

Executive Director, Energy Policy and Regulation

Bill Donahue

Puget Sound Energy

Manager, Natural Gas Resources

Randy Gabe

Southwest Gas Corporation

Vice President, Gas Resources

Greg Caldwell

ATCO Pipelines

Senior Manager, Research and Innovation
Learn More

Greg was educated as an Engineer at the University of Alberta, specializing in Petroleum Engineering.
Greg’s professional experience consists of Engineering, Accounting, and Regulatory work in the Utility and Oil Field Industries.

His recent focus (since 2012) has been in the areas of Business Technology, Utility Regulation, and Innovation. Greg has extensive professional experience
dealing in Regulatory and financial matters, which when combined with his technical background provides a unique skillset to help understand and analyze problems holistically from an engineering, financial, and regulatory perspective. He currently participates on national committees with the Canadian Gas Association in partnership with multiple levels of government with goal of funding and testing of emerging technologies to combat climate change, promoting energy security, and alternative ways for Canadians to provide for their energy needs. Greg also participates as the Canadian representative for the International Gas Union Innovation committee.
Greg is married and has two children aged three and six. When not spending time with his family he enjoys playing hockey, travelling, and learning about new technologies and strategies to solve the challenges facing industry and society.

Ralph Epling

IGI Resources, Inc.

Managing Director
Learn More

Ralph retired from IGI Resources Inc. (a BP Energy Co.) in 2019 and has started his own company to develop renewable natural gas projects and provide consulting services to the energy industry.

Prior to this, Ralph was with IGI Resources, Inc in Seattle since 1994. BP purchased IGI in 2000. Ralph was responsible for marketing gas to large industrial and Utility customers in the Pacific NW.

Ralph has prior experience working for several gas utilities in the Pacific NW and also has experience working for a small gas producer negotiating agreements to move gas from the wellhead to the burnertip.

Jenelle De La Cour


Product Marketing and Relationship Manager