[Noozhawk’s note: Thank you to all who entered our drawing to be Noozhawk’s guests at Friday’s Santa Barbara Technology & Industry Association Economic Action Summit. The names we drew were Andy Fuller, Michael Hagler , Michael Holliday, Bryan Hope, Dick Jensen, Andrea Lamartin, Melissa Mortensen, Bill Shelor, Phil Strong and Nancy Tuomey.]

“The Green Economy.”

Popular with politicians and policy wonks, “The Green Economy” has become a catchphrase solution to challenges left and right. Ask President Barack Obama or Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and they’ll tell you they believe America’s future economy will be a green one. There are idealistic reasons (reducing carbon emissions, climate change) and practical ones (public expectations, green jobs as replacements for lost manufacturing jobs).

But where government invests, business is sure to follow. Take energy, for instance. Santa Barbara has deep roots in oil and gas production, which is now being supplemented by the rapid development and proliferation of local alternative energy projects. The incentives are there so it’s no surprise entrepreneurs can be found pursuing opportunities, too. Not even Noozhawk is immune. Why do you think we launched our Green Hawk section? Just kidding — partly.

To make sense of it all, the Santa Barbara Technology & Industry Association will be using its eighth annual Economic Action Summit on Friday to focus on the future of the green economy, cap-and-trade legislation, and the outlook for green jobs on the Central Coast and beyond.

The summit is divided into three sessions:

» Will Cap & Trade Work? Tobe Plough, an energy industry consultant representing the Santa Barbara County Taxpayers Association; Joe Sparano, CEO of the Western States Petroleum Association; and Rock Zierman, CEO of the California Independent Petroleum Association, will discuss the cap-and-trade legislation wending its way through Congress, as well as what it might mean for the local energy industry, research and development, business in general, and communities and taxpayers.

Fair warning: The panel will be moderated by yours truly. I wouldn’t blame you if you were inclined to ask for a discount because of that, but I can offer you free tickets instead. Read on for more information.

» Future of the Green Economy. Retired Navy Capt. Brad “Brick” Conners of Booz Allen Hamilton technology consultants; Tam Hunt, president of Community Renewable Solutions LLC and a frequent Noozhawk commentary contributor; and James Taylor, senior fellow at the Heartland Institute, will explore the opportunities and challenges ahead, and what Central Coast residents can expect. The discussion will be moderated by Andy Caldwell, executive director of COLAB, the Coalition of Labor, Agriculture & Business.

» Green Jobs Forecast. Mark Schniepp, executive director of the California Economic Forecast, will chart the progress of the green economy and explain local, regional and statewide employment trends related to its development.

The Santa Barbara Technology & Industry Association’s eighth annual Economic Action Summit is sponsored by BEI Technologies Inc., Chumash Casino Resort, DCOR LLC, Noozhawk, PXP, Santa Barbara County, Santa Maria Valley Chamber of Commerce, Vandeventer Group, Venoco Inc. and Western States Petroleum Association.

The summit is 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. Friday at Hotel MarMonte, 1111 E. Cabrillo Blvd. Tickets are $35. For more information, e-mail Karla Armendariz at kdabizsolutions@cox.net or call 805.684.0678.

Noozhawk is giving away four tickets for readers who would like to attend as our guests. E-mail me and we’ll enter your names in a drawing to be held Wednesday.

Noozhawk publisher Bill Macfadyen can be reached at wmacfadyen@noozhawk.com. Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk. Become a fan of Noozhawk on Facebook.

A dark-haired man in glasses with a beard and a mustache smiles at the camera

William M. Macfadyen, Noozhawk Publisher

Bill Macfadyen is Noozhawk’s founder and publisher. Contact him at wmacfadyen@noozhawk.com, and follow him on Instagram: @bill.macfadyen. The opinions expressed are his own.