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James Badham

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OCTOBER 18, 2007

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA EDISON SUPPORTS ENERGY-WATER RESEARCH AT BREN

SANTA BARBARA, CALIF. – Southern California Edison recently joined the Bren School Corporate Partners program, then presented the School with a check for $35,000 to fund a second year of research on issues related to the energy-water nexus in California. Led by Bren Professor Arturo Keller, the project is also linked to a master’s Group Project with SCE as the client of the year-long student study.

SCE was a strategic partner in the design of Bren Hall, the LEED Platinum building that houses the School, and last year it became a program partner by providing seed funding to help launch the Energy & Water Sustainability research program.

“We are extremely grateful to SCE for its support,” said Professor Keller. “In the first year of the Program, were able to fund a research project for five MESM students and hold the First Western Forum on Energy & Water Sustainability. The research project evaluated the water use in generating electricity from various energy sources, including biofuels, and produced some timely results. The Forum was highly successful, bringing together professionals, regulators, and researchers from more than six western states to discuss the energy-water nexus. This second year of funding will allow us to support research by another group of students on issues related to energy and water sustainability, and to disseminate our research results at regional, national, and international venues. The partnership with SCE is important.”

“Southern California Edison believes that support for the Bren School helps us achieve our goal of enhancing the company’s ability to provide cost-effective, safe, reliable, and environmentally conscious electric services,” said Jack Sahl, SCE Director of Environment, Health & Safety. “The Bren School and its Energy & Water Sustainability Program address our corporate goal by researching innovative solutions to ever-increasing technical and environmental issues associated with providing our service. We commend the Bren School for its research in these important areas that benefit electric utility customers and everyone concerned with environmental quality.”

“I am quite pleased with this partnership, which represents the best kind of cooperation between industry and academia,” said Bren School Dean Ernst Ulrich von Weizsäcker. “As part of its efforts to provide energy in a sustainable way, SCE is funding research at the Bren School that is useful in achieving those goals. It is an attractive, symmetrical, and mutually beneficial arrangement.”

Based in Rosemead, Calif., SCE is one of the nation’s largest investor-owned electric utilities, serving more than 13 million people in a 50,000 square-mile area of central, coastal and Southern California.

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The Bren School of Environmental Science & Management at the University of California, Santa Barbara, is home to an interdisciplinary graduate program focused on environmental problem solving through the integration of science, management, law, economics, and policy. Offering both a professional Master of Environmental Science & Management degree and a Ph.D. track, the School’s mission is to play a leading role in researching environmental issues, training scientists and environmental management professionals, and identifying and solving environmental problems around the world. It is ranked among the top four programs of its kind in the nation and is the only such program in the western United States.