Cleantech In Colorado
Colorado is leading the way in cleantech employment, R&D and investment. The cluster of companies, national laboratories and university resources that call the state home are second to none. Colorado was the first state to pass clean energy standards by the ballot, we’re 4th nationally in cleantech job concentration, 8th in cleantech venture capital investment, and our federal labs make us number one in the world for cleantech research.
Within the United States, Colorado is a national leader in adopting clean energy technologies and supporting the ecosystem of individuals, businesses and institutions fueling the state’s cleantech industry. 2016 highlights:
- 26,270, direct employment
- $4.6 billion economic impact
- 22.4% employment growth in the last 5 years
- $20.5 million in VC cleantech investments
*stats from Clean Edge, Cleantech Group, & Metro Denver EDC
Colorado offers several incentive programs that are available to investors, entrepreneurs and cleantech businesses of all sizes.
- AI Grant Program
- Angel Tax Credit
- Innovative Industries Internship Program
- R&D Tax Refund
- Export Grants
- Additional Incentives
The Advanced Industries (AI) Accelerator Programs promote growth and sustainability in Colorado’s 7 advanced industries by helping drive innovation, accelerate commercialization, encourage public-private partnerships, increase access to early stage capital and create a strong ecosystem that increases the state’s global competitiveness.
- Lightning Hybrids
- Solid Power
- Steelhead Composites
- Prieto Battery
- EcoVapor Recovery Systems
- Biota Technology
- Clear Comfort
- ION Engineering
- OptiEnz Sensors
- SunTech Drive
- NREL (EcoSnap AC)
- Avivid Water Technologies
- Forge Nano
The Colorado Export Grant is a Colorado financial assistance program for aspiring and current Colorado exporters entering into a new international market. The grant program supports small and medium-sized business through funds to offset international business development and marketing costs.
Through relationships and reputation, CCIA connects people, products and investments and regularly hosts delegations from around the globe. CCIA works with partners from OEDIT, the Department of Commerce, NREL, the World Trade Center and World Denver to represent Colorado’s world class cleantech hub across the globe. Our international visitors are looking for industry partnerships, encouraging U.S. businesses to expand in their countries, identifying investable companies, and learning about regulation and policy support. CCIA is often one of their first stops to access one of the top clean technology regions in the country.
- NREL International Office
- World Denver
CCIA actively and successfully advocates for Colorado’s clean technology industries at the Colorado State Legislature, and to the Administration of Governor John Hickenlooper. Our efforts have directly led to creation of programs that support the growth of the industries and serve to position Colorado as a clean energy leader.
- Strong RPS
- Commercial PACE
- Advanced Transportation Incentives
- Hydrogen Build Out
- Solar Energy Gardens
Colorado became the first state in the U.S. to enact a renewable portfolio standard (RPS) by ballot initiative (i.e., via an initiated state statute) when voters approved the Colorado Renewable Energy Requirement Initiative, also known as Amendment 37, in November 2004. Each qualifying retail utility is required to generate or cause to be generated electricity from eligible energy resources in the following proportions of its retail electricity sales for 2020 and each year thereafter: 30% for each investor-owned utility (IOU), 20% for each electric cooperative serving 100,000 meters or more, and 10% for each electric cooperative serving less than 100,000 meters and each municipal utility serving more than 40,000 meters.
C-PACE enables owners of Eligible Commercial & Industrial Buildings to finance up to 100% of Energy Efficiency, Renewable Energy and Water Conservation Eligible Improvements. Financing is provided by private Capital Providers at competitive rates with repayment terms up to 20 years.
Refuel Colorado is an effort by the Colorado Energy Office to encourage the adoption of alternative fuel vehicles in Colorado to lead a cheaper, cleaner, domestic transportation future. HB16-1332 set fixed flat tax credit values for each vehicle class size regardless of fuel type, eliminating calculations and guesswork. For consumer vehicles, the incentives for buying an EV in Colorado are the most generous in the nation. Right now, you can qualify for up to $13,500 in state and federal tax credits.
Colorado is ready and open for the construction of hydrogen fueling stations and the introduction of fuel cell vehicles, with retail hydrogen fueling regulations becoming effective as of 1//1/2017.
On February 22, 2016, Governor Hickenlooper signed into law HB 16-1053, Retail Hydrogen Fuel Systems Regulation.
Colorado is home to a robust energy community and CCIA partners with organizations across the energy spectrum to build and support the State’s energy ecosystem. Together with our partners we are proud to have developed collaborative programs, networking events, policy work and educational offerings.
- Energy Fellows Institute
- Global Energy Management
- Energy I-Corps
- Colorado Energy Coalition
- Colorado Energy Research Collaboratory
- Rocky Mountain Cleantech Open
- Colorado Clean Energy Cluster
- Interwest Energy Alliance
A CCIA program, the Energy Fellows Institute (EFI) is the nation’s first program to educate experienced entrepreneurs and executives in industry sectors of the advanced energy and cleantech ecosystems. The program provides the opportunity for executives and entrepreneurs to be introduced to new ventures and technologies that ultimately create jobs and grow the energy sector. The 2017 program will be held May 10 – 17, 2017.
As a partner in the Energy I-Corps program, CCIA helped stand-up this specialized training curriculum aimed at accelerating the transfer of clean energy technologies from national laboratories into the commercial marketplace. The training provides an entrepreneurial education to national laboratory researchers and connects them to potential customers and industry partners, helping to close the knowledge gap between researchers and the marketplace.
As part of Technology-to-Market’s Lab Impact portfolio, DOE’s Energy I-Corps focuses on fostering collaboration between the national laboratories and the private sector.
One of CCIA’s oldest partners, Metro Denver EDC’s CEC is a diverse organization dedicated to strengthening the business climate in Colorado supporting all sectors of the energy industry — fossil fuels, renewable resources, energy efficiency, and conservation. Members of the CEC represent the industry, finance, law, government, education, economic development, and the workforce system. Check out latest issue of the Resource Rich Colorado publication.
The Collaboratory is a research partnership between NREL and Colorado’s premier research universities—Colorado State University, the University of Colorado Boulder, and the Colorado School of Mines. The Collaboratory works to develop renewable energy products and technologies for rapid transfer to the marketplace, support economic growth with renewable energy industries and educate the finest energy researchers, technicians, and workforce.
Colorado has one of the highest per capita concentrations of federal science, research, and engineering facilities in the nation. Twenty-four federally funded scientific research laboratories have a high concentration of renowned scientists whose work has global impact in a number of areas including natural resource management, climate change and renewable energy. In addition to the federally funded laboratories, Colorado is home to leading energy research capabilities at the University of Colorado, Colorado School of Mines and Colorado State University. All of these labs represent important sources of basic research and development upon which business can create new commercial innovations. Check out the latest State of Innovation report by COIN.
NREL is the only federal laboratory dedicated to the research, development, commercialization, and deployment of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies. Towards this mission, NREL develops clean energy and energy efficiency technologies and practices, advances related science and engineering, and provides knowledge and innovations to integrate energy systems at all scales. CCIA’s partnership with NREL runs deep and we are proud of our collaborative history and our current work with NREL on the Lab-Corps and hydrogen programs.
Renewable and Sustainable Energy Institute (RASEI) is a joint institute between CU-Boulder and NREL addressing important, complex problems in energy that require a multidisciplinary, multi-institutional approach. Its mission is to expedite solutions that transform energy by advancing renewable energy science, engineering, and analysis through research, education, and industry partnerships.
CSU created the Energy Institute in 2013 to consolidate its vast energy research under one organization. Through its 13 affiliated centers, the Institute aims to increase collaboration with industry and governmental partners to solve real-world energy problems and create new research and educational opportunities for CSU faculty and students.
The Renewable Energy Materials Research Science and Engineering Center (the Center) harnesses the vibrant energy vision of the Colorado School of Mines, the extensive research resources of the nearby National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), and the growing national interest to advance the solar, fuel cell and renewable energy technologies and research. The Center integrates cutting edge basic research with education and outreach, into a powerful interdisciplinary mix to drive new research frontiers.
Innovation & Commercialization Partners
Colorado is blessed with a wealth of clean tech innovation and commercialization assets that help to grow companies and industries.
Innosphere is a nonprofit 501(c)3 incubator focused on supporting entrepreneurs who are building potential high-growth companies in cleantech, software, biosciences and digital health. Innosphere’s incubation program for startups focuses on mentoring, capital, strategy and growth.
A merger with the Innovation Center of the Rockies was announced on 12.27.16.
As a subcontractor to the Lab-Corps program, CCIA is proud to have helped stand-up this specialized training curriculum aimed at accelerating the transfer of clean energy technologies from national laboratories into the commercial marketplace. To date, nearly 50 teams have gone through the program and we look forward to working with an additional 24 teams in 2017. A key component to the Lab-Corps program is the partnership with industry leaders and mentors. Thanks to these executives, Lab-Corps Industry Night is one of the most popular sessions of the program and the Colorado-based mentors have helped direct teams towards commercialization.
Founded in 2005, the Innovation Center of the Rockies (ICR) is one of America’s premier entrepreneurial support organizations. The Innovation Center of the Rockies is a non-profit incubator unique in that we concentrate on job creation and leverage the local entrepreneurial community in our efforts. ICR is a non-profit incubator and concentrates on job creation and leveraging the local entrepreneurial community in their efforts.
A merger with Innosphere was announced on 12.27.2016.
The Colorado Center for Renewable Energy Economic Development (CREED) is a catalyst for economic development in Colorado through clean energy and energy efficiency innovation and entrepreneurship. A statewide stakeholder network supports the creation and growth of cleantech companies throughout the State of Colorado.
Not sure how your company can leverage our great state?
HB 17 - 1090 - Advanced Industry Investment Tax Credit Extension
A qualified investor who, prior to January 1, 2018, makes an equity investment in a qualified small business from an advanced industry is allowed an income tax credit that is equal to a percentage of the investment, up to a maximum credit of $50,000.
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