Thanks to all who participated in this year's Water & Energy Nexus Forum. We had a great event. Watch for the event next year, or review last year's agenda to see what the Water & Energy Nexus Forum is all about.


The Rural Water Association of Utah and the Governor’s Office of Energy will be hosting the 3rd Annual Water & Energy Nexus Forum on October 27th in Vernal, Utah.  This year’s agenda will address not only the energy and water uses and impacts in the Uintah Basin area, but in Utah as a whole. If you haven’t attended the Water and Energy Nexus Forum yet, don’t miss this exciting opportunity! Spend the day being enlightened, educated and entertained by speakers like Dr. Laura Nelson of the Utah Office of Energy Development. Dr. Nelson is responsible for implementing the state energy policy by facilitating the development of the Utah’s diverse energy and minerals sector.

We will also hear from multiple panels with representatives from the water, energy and agricultural industries discussing new technologies affecting energy and agriculture, as well as issues like hydraulic fracturing and a discussion on what energy companies are doing to save water. Congressman Bishop will address us on how the water-energy nexus ties into the public land debate…the list goes on and on! Check your mailbox for the forum brochure with full details and on this page to see the agenda, registration, and sponsorship opportunities coming soon!

The Water & Energy Nexus Forum is hosted by the Rural Water Association, the Governor’s Office of Energy Development, the Department of Natural Resources and the Department of Water Quality.


8:00 am - 8:10 am:
Welcome Scott Chew, State of Utah Representative

8:10 am - 8:30 am:
Remarks -Utah is the second driest state in the nation experiencing a population boom that is set to double by 2050. Given these trends, Dr. Nelson will address the opportunities of developing water and energy systems that meet growing demand, while efficiently utilizing our natural resources - Dr. Laura Nelson, Governor’s Office of Energy Development

8:30 am - 9:00 am:
Morning Keynote Address The importance of Energy & Water Development in the Uintah Basin and how the two connect with saving energy & protecting resources. - Kevin T. Van Tassell, State of Utah Senator

9:00 am - 10:20 am:Energy Savings Associated with Conservation
-9:00 - 9:20 a.m.       H2Oath, Utah’s Water-Wise Pledge -Faye Rutishauser, Division of Water Resources
-9:20 - 10:00 a.m.     Conservation -Monica Hoyt, Central Utah Water Conservancy District
-10:00 - 10:20 a.m.   Automated Meter Reading Systems -Matt McAllister, Mountainland Supply


10:20 am - 10:30 am:
Networking Break

10:30 am - 11:30 am:
PANEL: How Land Management Policies Affect Water Supply- Moderator, John Baza, Director- Utah Division of Oil, Gas & Mining
This panel of industry experts will discuss ways in which policy impacts the Uintah Basin’s water and energy concerns. As the energy hub of the state, a reliable and clean water supply is crucial to future energy development and economic viability in the Basin and across the state. The panelists will explore the effect of harvesting invasive species, sage grouse regulations, and best practices for producers to use water efficiently.
- Newfield
- AEG Coalswitch
- Integrated Energy Companies
- Division of Wildlife Resources


11:30 am - 12:00 pm:
Hydraulic Fracturing- Hydraulic fracturing (HF) has been an operational practice for completing and stimulating oil and gas wells in Utah since the earliest days of drilling in the state.  State government regulation of the practice commenced with creation of the Utah Oil and Gas Conservation Commission in 1955.  Now, under the oversight of the Division of Oil, Gas, and Mining (OGM), new wells are drilled and completed using HF as a principle method for establishing new well production and improving production from existing wells.  This presentation will provide some historical context, an explanation of the technology currently being utilized, and the regulatory framework used by OGM for monitoring HF and protecting water resources—John Baza, Director, Utah Division of Oil, Gas and Mining

12:00 pm - 1:00 pm:
Lunch—Vendor Presentations [Spots available]

1:00 pm - 1:20 pm:
Historical Statutes and Case Law -Utah’s energy development is dependent upon water. The energy industry must abide by Utah water rights law in order to enhance Utah’s Economy. This topic will address this year's water law cases and legislation. -Johnathan R. Schutz, Mabey Wright & James PLLC

1:20 pm - 2:50 pm:
PANEL:  Utah’s Water- Energy - Food Opportunities -Moderator, Utah Department of Agriculture & Food
As Utah’s population is set to double by 2050, how can resources be used to provide the necessary water, energy, and food for the growing populous? Panelists ranging from a variety of backgrounds will explore innovations in agriculture, infrastructure, and development to explain how these technological breakthroughs and resources all fit together.
-Idaho National Lab
-Division of Water Rights
-Harvest Squared


2:50 pm - 3:00 pm:
Networking Break  

3:00 pm - 3:30 pm:
Afternoon Keynote Address

3:30 pm  - 4:00 pm:
Closing Dessert Social