STEP Seminar: Two Heinous Flaws with Electric Utility Management & Regulation, And How to Fix Them

Center for Science, Technology, and Environmental Policy
March 1, 2022 - 11:30 am CST
- 12:30 pm
Join us to hear from George Crocker, Executive Director of the North American Water Office (NAWO), who will share wisdom from his career in electric utility management and regulation.

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George W. Crocker
George W. Crocker
About the Speaker

Mr. Crocker co-founded the North American Water Office (NAWO) in 1982 with his wife Lea Foushee because of lessons learned during the North Dakota/West Central Minnesota powerline struggle chronicled by the late Senator Paul Wellstone and Dr. Mike Casper in the book, POWERLINE: The First Battle of America’s Energy War. Under Mr. Crocker’s direction as Executive Director, NAWO intervened in a wide variety of electric utility decision-making proceedings, including rulemaking, certificate of need, rate-making, and Integrated Resource Planning. NAWO spearheaded the opposition to dry cask storage of high-level nuclear waste at the Prairie Island Nuclear Plant which ultimately led to legislative mandates in 1994 that brought modern renewable energy technologies up to the utility scale in North America.


Mr. Crocker provided key leadership for Community-Based Energy Development (C-BED) legislation that passed into law in Minnesota in 2005. His analytical insight and community organizing skill resulted in the West Central Minnesota C-BED Transmission Analysis, which in turn enabled Mr. Crocker and his Electrical Engineering partner, Michael J. Michaud, to cause the 2007 Minnesota Legislature to pass legislation requiring all Minnesota electric utilities, for the first time in North America, to construct a single, fully integrated power flow model that incorporated every transmission and distribution facility in the entire state. This analysis provides the foundation for understanding how to intelligently and cost-effectively enhance transmission infrastructure to meet requirements of the emerging energy paradigm.


In 2011, Mr. Crocker co-founded Minneapolis Energy Options (MEO) to deal with Franchise Agreements between the City of Minneapolis and its energy providers, Xcel Energy and CenterPoint Energy. MEO morphed into Community Power, which is presently the prime mover in an Inclusive Financing docket before the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission.

Contact Info
Questions? Contact Olivia Schares