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Joint Venture Climate Protection Task Force to Hold First Meeting

Plug-in Hybrid CarA steering committee is now in place to guide Joint Venture’s newly hatched climate protection initiative, with the first meeting set for May 10. In a letter sent to prospective members on April 6, the steering committee said the initiative’s goal is creating a carbon-neutral public sector in Silicon Valley by “facilitating the formation of a public-private partnership that will help public agencies acquire greenhouse gas reduction technologies and products such as photovoltaics, fuel cell generators, hybrid and alternative fuel vehicles, energy efficiency technologies, building automation, waste processing equipment, and bulk Renewable Energy Credits.”

This partnership aims to “form a regional procurement pool that will allow our cities and counties to attract high quality vendors, command the best prices, and encourage the development of the clean tech industry cluster that is emerging in Silicon Valley. The task force will also work to obtain benchmark measurements of Greenhouse Gases (GHG), provide opportunities for members to exchange best practices, learn about financing methods and new technologies, and develop an integrated approach to reducing our carbon footprint.”

The letter was signed by the six steering committee members:

  • Darren Deffner of Pacific Gas & Electric Co.
  • Susan Loftus of the City of San Mateo
  • Brian Moura of the City of San Carlos
  • Larry Owen of the City of Santa Clara
  • Bobby Ram of SunPower Corp.
  • Joint Venture Vice President Seth Fearey.
Click here to learn more about the Climate Protection Initiative

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“California Competes” Unveils Agenda for 2007

“California Competes,” a broad coalition brought together by Joint Venture, unveiled its agenda for 2007 in letters sent on March 28 to members of the state Assembly and Senate. The coalition is calling for the Legislature and governor to support three programs in the fiscal 2007-2008 budget:

Governor Schwarzenegger* An investment of $7 million so schools can recruit and train qualified math and science teachers, in numbers sufficient to maintain the state’s competitive edge.

* Augmenting the annual operating funds for the California Institutes for Science and Innovation by at least $20 million, and providing additional support for research initiatives in supercomputing, biofuels, clean energy, bio- and nanotechnology.

* Changing corporate income tax policy to allow companies operating in California to use an apportionment formula that relies on in-state sales in calculating their tax liability.

The letters carried 57 signatures, including numerous Silicon Valley CEOs, venture capitalists and other business leaders.

Click here to read the letters.

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Joint Venture Wireless Project Launches Transportation Group

Wireless technology can’t reduce the number of vehicles choking Silicon Valley highways and streets, but it can increase throughput. Joint Venture’s new Wireless Transportation Systems Users Group is exploring a range of wireless applications that could make driving faster and safer. The committee – which includes members from the Silicon Valley research labs of BMW, Daimler Chrysler, General Motors, Toyota and Volkswagen – held its initial meeting on April 4.

Chris WilsonWireless web cams positioned along highways could, for example, give law enforcement and transportation agencies near-instant alerts on accidents and congestion. Wireless readers could monitor usage of special toll lanes, with peak-hour premiums and off-peak discounts. Parking meters connected to a wireless network could accept credit-card payment, and you could add time from your mobile phone. Bus stops could have display screens telling riders when the next bus is coming.

Click here to learn more about the Transportation Group.

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Valley Vision is compiled as a public service by The TDA Group (www.tdagroup.com), a high tech marketing and custom publishing agency in Los Altos.

Joint Venture Teams with Commonwealth Club

David Brailer Kicks Off New Program Series

The Commonwealth Club of California, the nation's oldest and largest public affairs forum with more than 18,000 members, is teaming with Joint Venture to launch a series of quarterly events focusing on issues in Joint Venture's major project areas.

The kick-off program is set for the morning of June 20, at the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital on the Stanford University campus. The topic: Can Technology Save Health Care? The speaker: Dr. David Brailer, who recently departed the Bush Administration as the first National Coordinator for Health Information Technology. The moderator: Varian Medical Chair Richard Levy, who is co-chair of Joint Venture's Health Tech project.
 

Click here for more information on the new series, and to register ($15) for Dr. Brailer's presentation.

Joint Venture Vice President to Lead Google-backed Non-profit

Judith Kleinberg, Joint Venture’s vice president for policy and programs, departed on April 13 to join INSTEDD, a new non-profit created by Google.org, the philanthropic arm of Google.

INSTEDD, which will soon have a new name, has a sweeping mission to support government agencies and humanitarian organizations in responding to natural disasters, public health crises and human conflicts throughout the world. Kleinberg, who led Joint Venture's disaster planning initiative, is now INSTEDD’s vice president and chief administrative officer, working from an office in Palo Alto. She also serves on the Palo Alto City Council.

“In her two years with Joint Venture, Judy spearheaded a statewide innovation initiative (California Competes), established a new program in disaster planning, and worked with city officials to develop a unified building code for the region,” said Joint Venture president Russell Hancock. “We'll miss her expertise and her superb ability to gather people, but we’re also happy her talents will now be shared on a global stage.”