New Colorado Cleantech Action Plan Identifies Leading Drivers of Industry Growth in the State

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The Colorado Cleantech Action Plan, released yesterday at a State Capitol news conference, finds Colorado's innovation in the wind, solar, smart grid and bio-derived sectors, combined with the state's progressive policies, will be the leading driver of industry growth over the next five years. The analysis, commissioned by the Colorado Cleantech Industry Association (CCIA), was conducted over a five-month period by an independent consulting firm, Navigant Consulting, and involved more than 100 industry stakeholders.

The Colorado Cleantech Action Plan, released yesterday at a State Capitol news conference, identifies Colorado's cleantech assets and provides detailed, implementable actions that must be taken in order to maintain growth in Colorado's cleantech industry. The announcement is made by Christine Shapard, Executive Director of the Colorado Cleantech Industry Association (CCIA), who says, "Such efforts will continue to make Colorado the location of choice for top cleantech companies and drive cleantech-related job growth in the future." The CCIA commissioned Navigant Consulting earlier this year to conduct the study after raising funds from eight sponsoring agencies.

"The new data confirms Colorado's innovative clean-tech sector is a key driver of our economy - and will be for years to come," Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter, Jr., said. "In this difficult economic climate, cleantech will be a bright light that leads Colorado and the nation to a strong and sustainable economic future."

"Few states have the innovation and robust market attributes that Colorado has," Lisa Frantzis, managing director at Navigant, said. "In addition to the state's research universities, Colorado is home to numerous federal laboratories. Proximity to these innovation centers, combined with the state's strong Renewable Energy Standard of 30% by 2020, among other factors, helps attract the manufacturing operations of world-leading cleantech companies."

Says Shapard, "Key to our efforts was keeping in mind that this plan should provide the best opportunities for driving jobs, state revenues and tax base."

Findings of the five-month research project include:

  • Colorado's market creation policies and leadership in innovation will attract clean technology manufacturing and deployment.
  • While wind, solar, smart grid and bio-derived sectors are Colorado's priority sectors, the state's emerging sectors include water, energy efficiency, energy storage and clean transportation. Growing all sectors requires the state to:

» Increase the amount of capital available for cleantech in Colorado.
» Enhance the leadership capacity of cleantech company executives.
» Strengthen collaboration within the cleantech innovation ecosystem.
» Develop and implement regulatory and policy initiatives that accelerate project development.
» Attract cleantech companies' strategic operations to Colorado.
» Prepare the workforce for the cleantech economy in a coordinated manner.

The Colorado Cleantech Action Plan also addresses the state's historical ranking among leading states in conventional energy production (fifth in number of fossil fuel industry workers). With the conventional energy sector being the largest consumer of energy in the state, Colorado has a unique opportunity to drive further collaboration between the cleantech and conventional energy sectors in a way that is mutually beneficial.

"Colorado's natural gas industry is proud to participate in a proactive and thoughtful approach to creating a robust education and business climate that fosters the growth of cleantech in our state," Tisha Schuller, State Plan steering committee member and Executive Director of the Colorado Oil and Gas Association, commented.

"The CCIA believes the broad stakeholder engagement process used during the development of this report has helped position Colorado to bring about the change needed for significant industry growth," Shapard explains.

The Colorado Cleantech Action Plan, commissioned by the CCIA earlier this year, was made possible by these sponsoring agencies: the Colorado Economic Development Commission, Colorado Governor's Energy Office, Colorado School of Mines, Colorado State University, Colorado Workforce Development Council, Metro Denver Economic Development Corporation, University of Colorado, and the U.S. Economic Development Administration.

An electronic copy of the plan can be found at http: http://www.ColoradoCleantech.com.

About Navigant Consulting
Navigant Consulting is a specialized, global expert services firm dedicated to assisting clients in creating and protecting value in the face of critical business risks and opportunities. More information about Navigant can be found at http://www.navigantconsulting.com.

About the Colorado Cleantech Industry Association
The Colorado Cleantech Industry Association represents the interests of the state's cleantech industry. Its mission is to further establish Colorado as a world leader in clean technology. For more information, visit http://www.coloradocleantech.com.

CCIA also is found on these social media sites:
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/COCleantech
LinkedIn Group: http://www.linkedin.com/e/vgh/1882455
Facebook Fan Page: http://www.facebook.com/ColoradoCleantechIndustryAssociation
News Feed: http://coloradocleantech.blogspot.com
YouTube Channel: http://www.youtube.com/COCleantech

Contacts:
Shelly Curtiss, CCIA Communications Director, 303-623-2690

Maggie Chamberlin Holben, Absolutely Public Relations http://www.absolutelypr.com, 303-984-9801

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