Bio


Dr. Surles is consulting with Stanford University evaluating California’s ability to meet its carbon neutrality goals. He is consulting with UC/Berkeley/CIEE for the CPUC on expediting disputes related to installation of behind the meter generation, as well as analysis and policy development for demand response, energy efficient, and storage technologies. He is consultant to Hawaii Natural Energy Institute (HNEI) as part of HECO’s Integrated Grid Planning process for integration of distributed resources while maintaining grid stability and resiliency. He supports life-cycle analyses of energy systems for Hawaii PUC as well as analyses of disposal and recycling of solar and battery wastes requested by legislature. He consulted for Asian Development Bank (Malaysia and Indonesia) in 2019 and 2020. Since 2013 for APEC, he contributed to analysis of solar and wind in Vietnam and fossil energy and energy efficiency analyses in Peru and Indonesia, as well as energy system analyses for China, Taiwan, Korea and Vietnam (most recently in 2021). Other clients include USDOE, IEA, East-West Center, NELHA, UK Energy Research Centre, and State of Victoria. For IEA, he supported their activities in Southeast Asia focused on multi-national grids. In 2015 and 2016, he led the review of USDOE national laboratory capabilities for Department of Energy’s Grid Modernization Initiative.
He was emergency hire as Administrator for Hawaii State Energy Office in 2017, working with utilities, NGOs, the legislature, and the Governor’s Office. From 2013 to 2015, he led Clean Energy Solutions for UH College of Social Sciences. From 2010 to 2012, as Desert Research Institute Executive Vice President, he led three divisions and four research centers in energy and environment systems. From 2006 to 2010, he led HNEI’s Technology Integration and Policy Analysis Lead, focusing on policies and deployment for grid integration of renewable resources. From 2004 to 2006, he was Vice President at EPRI focusing on air quality, health, energy/water nexus, and climate change issues. From 2000 to 2004, he was at the California Energy Commission as R&D Program Director with emphasis on energy efficiency, renewable energy, grid modernization, and regional climate assessment. In this position, he took leave from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory where he was Associate Laboratory Director for Energy Programs from 1998 to 2000, focusing on energy efficiency, nuclear materials protection and disposal, energy storage, and climate change science. In 1997, he was as Deputy Secretary for Science and Technology at CalEPA. From 1978 to 1997, he was at Argonne National Laboratory with his final position being General Manager for Environmental Programs. Major program areas included energy systems assessment, climate change science, risk analysis and assessment, emergency planning and response, and energy and environmental modeling and policy analysis.
Dr. Surles received his Ph.D. in Chemistry from Michigan State and has more than 360 publications, technical reports, and presentations. He has served on a number of advisory committees (currently on two NREL Advisory Panels), including seven appointments with the National Research Council.

Academic Appointments


  • Lecturer, Stanford Introductory Studies