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News Release: Green Economic Development Partnership to Boost Clean Energy Startups in Colorado

June 17, 2011

Through a collaborative partnership to expand cleantech entrepreneurship in Colorado, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and the State of Colorado have formed the Colorado Center for Renewable Energy Economic Development (CREED) in Golden, Colo.

CREED is designed to bring together stakeholders and service providers that support the creation and growth of startup cleantech companies, contributing to economic development in Colorado.

“CREED will boost growth in the energy sector by bringing together innovation, entrepreneurialism and job-creation,” said TJ Deora, Director of the Governor’s Energy Office. “CREED provides real value in bringing together expertise in technology, energy markets, and economic development, and the support we receive boosts our efforts to recruit more clean energy investment to Colorado.”

“Leveraging the resources of DOE, NREL, the State of Colorado and industry — all under one roof — simply makes sense,” NREL’s Senior Vice President for Commercialization & Deployment Casey Porto said. “By making it easier to work with one another and communicate on a regular basis, we will enhance our ability to drive sustainable economic development and job creation. We are already seeing the benefits of this close collaboration in helping identify key areas to focus resources within the Colorado cleantech ecosystem, and in developing new programs to serve the needs of the cleantech entrepreneurs.”

CREED is currently working with more than 25 stakeholders — governmental partners, universities, industry associations, venture capital organizations, and small businesses — in part to improve the access these groups have to technologies developed at NREL and to provide services such as classes and workshops for entrepreneurs.

"The State of Colorado is excited to be a partner in this unique and innovative collaboration, and looks forward to making progress in accelerating economic development for renewable energy in our state,” Dwayne Romero, executive director of the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade, said.

The efforts of the CREED partnership will contribute to the success of new clean technology companies, entrepreneurs and other ventures that ultimately improve Colorado’s economic viability and create jobs. CREED partners include:

  • NREL - the only federal laboratory dedicated solely to the research, development, commercialization and deployment of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies.
  • State of Colorado - Governor’s Energy Office and the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade.
  • Colorado Renewable Energy Collaboratory - a research consortium of the Colorado School of Mines, Colorado State University, the University of Colorado at Boulder and NREL.
  • Colorado Cleantech Industry Association - CCIA is a statewide organization dedicated to promoting Colorado's cleantech industry. CCIA is the only industry-led, industry-focused cleantech group in the state.
  • CleanLaunch - is an incubator focused on assisting entrepreneurs. CleanLaunch has assisted more than 500 start-up and early-stage companies using its network of senior level business advisors who volunteer their time.
  • Colorado Association for Manufacturing and Technology (CAMT) - is a statewide manufacturing assistance center dedicated to increasing the competitiveness of Colorado manufacturers.

CREED will work to accelerate the commercial deployment of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies that emerge from NREL's programs. NREL’s Commercialization and Technology Transfer division will occupy the building along with representatives from CREED member agencies. CREED also has office space available for visiting industry and university collaborators. CREED is in the Denver West Office Park, near NREL’s South Table Mountain campus.

On June 23, CREED will offer its first class for entrepreneurs focusing on the creation of successful cleantech business plans as part of the CREED Entrepreneur Series. This program, focused on educating cleantech entrepreneurs, will incorporate classes, workshops, "pitch practices" and opportunities to meet with potential investors.

NREL is DOE’s primary national laboratory for renewable energy and energy efficiency research and development. NREL is operated for DOE by The Alliance for Sustainable Energy, LLC.


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—Heather Lammers