d’Arbeloff Departs New England Clean Energy Council for EnerNOC, Rothstein Replaces Him

4/28/10Follow @wroush

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the economic opportunities and the environmental challenges, and by the excitement of being able to bring clean energy technologies and solutions to market.”

Rothstein himself joined NECEC in 2009 from Flagship Ventures, where he was an entrepreneur in residence. He was previously the founder of Allegro Strategy, a cleantech venture development firm.

Rothstein says the next big challenges for NECEC will include reaching out to more organizations across New England with its programs for fostering clean energy innovation and workforce training. “We have been Massachusetts-centric in some ways, because we had to start at the core, but it’s been part of our plan for a while to expand and do a better job of involving all of New England in building a clean energy economy,” Rothstein says.

Xconomy spoke with d’Arbeloff early this afternoon; here’s a transcript.

Xconomy: You’re leaving the Clean Energy Council after three years as its founding director and later president. Do you feel like you accomplished what you set out to do?

Nick d’Arbeloff: I do feel as if I accomplished what I set out to do. The Council was every inch a startup, and as a startup the first job was to establish itself, and in the case of this nonprofit, begin adding value to the cleantech communty. I think the Council team did that and did that well, and developed a reputation for launching innovative programs which collectively have truly helped to grow the clean energy cluster in the region. That said, I also think there is lots of good work to be done by the Council in the future, and I think that Peter Rothstein will hit the ball out of the park.

X: What’s it like for you to switch from the nonprofit, policy sector back into the commercial world? How will your experience at the Council help you at EnerNOC?

Nd’A: I think in my heart I love starting things. Previous software startups are one example and the Council is another. The opportunity to start a new business unit [for EnerNOC] was one I found incredibly compelling. To be able to join a high quality team in a company that is growing aggressively and with a great reputation in the marketplace hit all my hot buttons. I think the Council Experience and the exposire to policy will all come in very handy at EnerNOC. Energy is a regulated industry. Policy matters for any clean energy company. And to the extent that I’ve learned anything about those subjects at the Council, I will derive giod beneft to apply at EnerNOC.

X: I thought that your new title, vice president of enterprise energy management, was a new one at EnerNOC, but I didn’t realize that you’ll be leading an entirely new business unit.

Nd’A: It does represent a new business for the company. EnerNOC has not to date offered a polished enterprise energy management systems solution. And my role will be to develop that offering and acquire customers for that solution and make EnerNOC a force to be reckoned with in the enterprise energy management space.  The target customers will include both state energy offices as well as any large organization with a sizeable portfoloio of facilities.

X: You’re moving from an organization that was concerned with the whole spectrum of clean energy options, on the generation side and the efficiency side, to one where the whole emphasis is on efficiency and managing demand. Doesn’t that restrict what you can accomplish, in some ways?

Nd’A: Clearly the Council spends a fair amount of time on energy efficiency-related issues. But let me  put it htis way. Ultimately what the clean energy economy means is, we are applying technology and intelligence to allow individuals and businesses across the country [to be] smarter and more efficent around energy management, and EnerNOC is right in the sweet spot of that definition. People often think of cleantech as somehow related to solar and wind, which are the two most popular areas, but officially, it’s defined as anything that lessens man’s resource footprint, whether it’s water related, waste related, mitigation of carbon at the stack in an industrial enterprises, or demand response or reducing load, or enabling organizations to have infinitely more insight into their energy usage. It’s all part of how we become smarter about the resources we have. To talk directly to the product and business unit I’ll be driving: You can’t manage what you can’t measure. There are all lkinds of clean energy projects which will make much more sense when you can look at the data around their energy usage.

Wade Roush is a contributing editor at Xconomy. Follow @wroush

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