More than 2,500 people from around the world attended the 2019 Smart City Expo Atlanta at the Georgia World Congress Center Sept. 11-13 to learn and discuss innovative ideas and technology to improve their cities and communities.
Southern Company served as the founding sponsor and partner of this successful event that brought together leaders across the Southern Company system, government, corporations, nonprofits and entrepreneurial sectors.
Smart City Expo Atlanta is the only U.S. edition of Smart City Expo World Congress, the world’s leading conference and expo on smart cities and smart urban solutions, held annually in Barcelona. The Expo is focused on redefining what it means for a city to be “smart” with equity, prosperity, humanity, inclusion, and justice serving on par with blockchain, A.I., IoT, big data, and automation.
At Smart City Expo Atlanta, industry, community and business leaders discussed how social and economic mobility, equitable infrastructure and human capital are being prioritized in the new “smart city,” one defined by digital transformation, artificial intelligence, early-stage investments and other civic innovations and solutions.
Martin Davis, executive vice president and Chief Information Officer of Southern Company, delivered the event’s opening remarks, welcoming guests to Atlanta and discussing Southern Company’s investments and commitment to play a key role in providing infrastructure that helps build resilient, connected and sustainable communities while also enhancing the quality of life, enriching growth and increasing economic development.
“We are developing partnerships with our citizens, our cities and other industries in bringing great technological solutions to the table to create smart cities,” Davis said.
Davis pointed to various projects across the system such as the two state-of-the-art smart neighborhoods in Atlanta and Birmingham providing customers with advanced home construction, distributed energy resources and smart home appliances. These developments feature the latest energy technology such as roof top solar panels, community-scale microgrids, smart home automation and energy-efficient products.
Additional leaders from across the enterprise facilitated or participated on various panels discussing clean energy, public safety, cyber security, strategies to decrease carbon emissions, electric transportation strategies and more.
Participating panelists and moderators included Jennifer Zeller, Bentina C. Terry, Latanza Adjei and Christine Primmer from Georgia Power; Dr. Mark S. Berry, Vicki Carleton, Jarell Mikell, James Leverette and Nicole Faulk from SCS and Todd Rath from Alabama Power.
“It’s incredible to see how technology will make our lives easier and, if done thoughtfully, can be used to work on issues in our communities,” said Terry, senior vice president, northwest region for GPC.
Panelists also discussed the civic engagement and partnership that will be required to make smart technology accessible and affordable to everyone in the community.
“We need to leave future generations a better world than where we are today and energy is a big piece of that,” said Dr. Arshad Mansoor, senior vice president of the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) during his fireside chat with Dr. Mark S. Berry, vice president of Environmental & Natural Resources for Georgia Power and vice president of Southern Company Services Research & Development, on the importance of creating a clean energy future.
In addition to the panels, attendees were able to view the Southern Company SO Smart Home and various smart technology and innovations, such as smart lighting and EV charging stations, that the company has developed.
For more information on the Smart City Expo Atlanta, please visit https://smartcityexpoatlanta.com/.