Nuclear power has had a controversial history. Today, however, it is often considered an essential energy source for a lower-carbon future. In a continuation of our NOW series on the energy transition, Erika Pagel sits down with Joe Dominguez, CEO of Constellation, the leading operator of nuclear power plants in the US. Joe and Erika discuss progress in shifting to a lower-carbon economy, where nuclear fits in, promising innovations, and what it will take to get to net zero by 2050.
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The energy transition is one of the great investment themes—and investment opportunities—of our time. As we think about how to position our clients’ portfolios for long-term growth, we believe understanding all aspects of the transition is imperative.
And nuclear energy could play a key role in that transition.
Nuclear power has had a controversial history—but today, it is often considered an essential part of the energy mix as we move to a lower-carbon future. Today’s advanced Small Modular Reactors, or SMRs, offer nuclear power with substantially lower capital investment, smaller footprints, efficient manufacturing, and enhanced safety, compared with traditional nuclear reactors.
I’m Erika Pagel. I’m the Chief Investment Officer for Sustainable Investing and a portfolio manager at Brown Advisory. As we examine the move to a lower-carbon economy during this NOW series on the energy transition, we want to understand different opportunities and perspectives across the energy landscape. So, we reached out to Joe Dominguez, the CEO of Constellation, to discuss the opportunities around “new” nuclear. Joe is an ideal person to learn from—Constellation is the leading operator of nuclear power plants in the United States, as well as one of the largest producers of all types of renewable energy across the US. As you’ll hear, Joe is quite frank about the opportunities, and challenges, that we face around the move to a sustainable energy future.
I learned a lot from my conversation with Joe—and hope you will too.
President and Chief Executive Officer, Constellation
Joseph Dominguez is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Constellation, which employs 13,000 workers, has generating capacity of more than 32,400 megawatts and serves more than 20 million homes and businesses with clean energy. With revenues of more than $17 billion and total assets of $49 billion, Constellation comprises both the nation's lowest-carbon fleet among large power producers and the largest competitive energy supplier. Together, they are America's clean energy leader, producing over 10% of the nation's clean energy and helping America transition to a clean, sustainable future.
As CEO, Dominguez oversees Constellation’s clean energy fleet of nuclear, wind, solar, hydroelectric and natural gas facilities in 19 states, and the nation's top competitive retail and commodities business, which provides electricity, natural gas and other energy-related products and services to two million residential, public sector and business customers nationwide, including more than three-fourths of the Fortune 100.
Previously, Dominguez served as CEO of ComEd, an Exelon company, which powers the lives of more than four million residential and business customers, or 70 percent of Illinois’ population. In that role, he was responsible for the safe and reliable delivery of electricity to customers and oversight of the management of the electric grid for over four million customers in Chicago and most of northern Illinois.
Prior to joining ComEd, Dominguez served as executive vice president of governmental and regulatory affairs and public policy for Exelon, where he led the development and implementation of federal, state, and regional governmental, regulatory, and public policy strategies.
Prior to joining Exelon, Dominguez was a partner in the law firm of White and Williams, LLP, with a broad-based litigation practice counseling large and small corporations, institutions, and government entities. He is a former assistant U.S. Attorney, Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
Dominguez earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the New Jersey Institute of Technology. He earned his law degree from Rutgers University School of Law, where he graduated magna cum laude, and was recognized as a Dean’s Scholar.
CIO for Sustainable Investing; Portfolio Manager, Brown Advisory
Erika is a partner, a member of the Executive Team, and serves as a portfolio manager and as the co-chief investment officer of private client, endowments and foundations. Erika has worked in the investment management industry since 1996. Prior to Brown Advisory, she was an investment advisor at Silver Bridge Advisors. Erika started her career at MFS Investment Management before working in sell-side Equity Research for eight years following large cap pharmaceuticals, household products, consumer and retail sectors at Schroder & Co and then UBS Investment Bank. More recently, she was an analyst following consumer and retail companies at a hedge fund, Balyasny Asset Management. For more than 12 years, Erika’s has been researching investment options for sustainable investment managers and helping clients build portfolios that are aligned with their goals.
As investors, we know that climate risk is real—and that we cannot achieve real climate action without a material shift to renewable energy sources. So, as we think about driving toward a lower carbon economy, we want to understand different opportunities and perspectives across the energy landscape. In this episode we are diving into renewables, and specifically into solar power. Brown Advisory's Erika Pagel sits down with Raghu Belur, the Co-founder and Chief Products Officer of Enphase Energy, which has revolutionized the solar industry with its microinverter-based technology. Erika and Raghu explore solar—in terms of economics, job creation, energy security and climate action.