Gov. Lends Star Power to Summer Conservation Effort In a ballroom some quipped was of a size suitable for an election-night victory party, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger helped Flex Your Power kick off its summer energy conservation campaign amid a tight but manageable power supply situation. "I've been flexing all my life," an exuberant Schwarzenegger joked to the large crowd at the June 30 event held at the Los Angeles International Airport Marriott. Before a bank of whirring television cameras, he urged Californians to cut their energy intake this summer. "Energy efficiency is our most cost-effective resource for meeting our energy needs," said Schwarzenegger. Schwarzenegger's call for conservation came at the beginning of a summer that will see an additional 1,000 MW of peak demand, according to Yakout Mansour, California Independent System Operator chief executive officer. "California is experiencing a lot of growth over the last year," said Mansour. The state will need to rely more on demand-response programs this summer to make ends meet during peak periods, even with recent improvements to the grid and generation capacity. Fortunately, according to Mansour, state utilities have enrolled enough customers in their interruptible supply programs since last summer to shed an additional 250 MW of load when needed. The governor outlined his energy accomplishments to the large gathering at the state's 2006 Energy Conservation Summit, which honored 36 businesses and other organizations for their laudatory efficiency practices and technologies. He cited how his administration has overseen upgrading transmission, the state's Million Solar Roofs initiative, a green building initiative, and construction of 5,000 MW of new power plants. Flex Your Power gave its "best overall" awards this year to Adobe Systems, the California Public Employees' Retirement System, and the University of California, Berkeley. Adobe is saving $748,000 a year through energy efficiency at its San Jose headquarters by means of lighting improvements, more efficient air conditioning, plug load reduction, and water conservation devices. CalPERS is reducing energy use by 20 percent at its Sacramento headquarters. The fund managers earmarked $200 million for investment in environmental technologies and another $500 million for environmentally responsible stock portfolios. UC Berkeley has installed 6,000 energy-efficient lights and established a green building research center, among other steps.