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Bridging the Valley of Death: Successfully Moving Energy Breakthroughs from Lab to Market

Canon House Office Building
Room 121
C Street SE
Washington, DC 20003

Wednesday, December 10, 2014
12PM – 1:30PM

RSVP to the event.

A major challenge in bringing down the cost of clean energy technologies is bridging the so-called “valley of death”—the state of technology development where many promising discoveries die because they are not sufficiently advanced to attract private sector partners or venture funding even though they may hold tremendous potential impact. This problem plagues a host of clean energy technologies, such as next-gen solar and advanced batteries, and it is the source of considerable policy debate and program experimentation.

But some universities and research laboratories are advancing their technology transfer capabilities to try and address the valley of death. For example, Carnegie Mellon University’s (CMU) faculty and students have leveraged their technology transfer prowess to spin out more than 130 companies over the past five years and have attracted approximately $400 million of outside investment. In addition, CMU is a leading research center for breakthrough energy technology development.

Please join the Center for Clean Energy Innovation and Carnegie Mellon University’s Scott Institute for Energy Innovation to learn how CMU is trying to bridge the valley of death and how its efforts can translate to […]

By |October 30th, 2014|Events|0 Comments|

The Hill – National Labs

Time for the National Labs to Go Local

Matthew Stepp and Mark Muro
Published September 25, 2014

Ask any tech entrepreneur or start-up founder what they know about the Department of Energy’s (DOE) national laboratories and most will shrug their shoulders. A few may refer to the famed Manhattan Project that built the atomic bomb — the impetus for creating the labs in the 1940s. Even fewer will know how to engage with the labs to advance their business. This gap needs to be lessened if we hope to further leverage the expertise of the labs to spur innovation and economic growth.

By |October 7th, 2014|Federal Policy, Innovation Ecosystem, Op-ed, Regional Clusters|Comments Off|

Can Mitigating Global Climate Change be a Free Lunch?

Paul Krugman launched the latest salvo in the battle over the economics of climate change when he recently announced: “Saving the planet would be cheap; it might even be free.” Unfortunately, his pronouncement ignores critical nuances on policy and technology that lead him to the wrong conclusion that climate mitigation is a free lunch.

Historically, economists have haggled over the true costs of burning fossil fuels and the social cost of carbon, but Krugman’s assessment is a newer argument around the true benefits of decarbonizing the global economy. The basic idea is that stating climate solutions will ruin the economy are wrong and society will actually see a net benefit to a low-carbon economy in the long-term.

This narrative got its start when climate advocates latched onto an IPCC finding that under strict assumptions of policy, technology readiness, and technology deployment mitigating climate change would only cost between 0.04 and 0.14 percent of global GDP per year through 2100—a pittance compared to the potential costs of runaway climate change.

Except that advocates can’t ignore the underlying challenges for making this scenario a reality – for example, the IPCC finding is driven by the implementation of a global carbon price, which […]

Next-Gen R&D Partnerships: The NCATS Success Story

Rayburn House Office Building
Room 2168
45 Independence Ave, SW
Washington, DC 20515

Wednesday, October 29, 2014
10AM – 11:30AM

A major challenge for federally funded research and technology is bridging the so-called “valley of death” – a state of development where many promising discoveries die because they are not sufficiently advanced to attract private sector partners or venture funding even though they may have tremendous potential impact.  This problem plagues many capital-intensive technologies, such as clean energy and biotechnology.

It’s particularly serious when dealing with rare or neglected diseases where developing new treatments can literally mean the difference between life and death.  As a result, the National Institutes of Health established the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS), which is working to improve the process of translating scientific and clinical discoveries into interventions that improve human health. To-date, NCATS has formed high-impact R&D partnerships that is revolutionizing how government agencies can remove barriers to commercialization, spur innovation, and provide greater returns to the American taxpayers from the billions of dollars invested in the federal research system.

Please join the House Technology Transfer Caucus, the Center for Clean Energy Innovation, the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation and a panel of leading experts to discuss the NCATS technology transfer […]

By |September 24th, 2014|Events|Comments Off|
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    Chris Coons to Serve as Honorary Co-chair of Center for Clean Energy Innovation

Chris Coons to Serve as Honorary Co-chair of Center for Clean Energy Innovation

The Center for Clean Energy Innovation (CCEI) has announced that U.S. Senator Chris Coons (D-DE) will serve as the organization’s Honorary Co-Chair. Coons will assist the Center in designing, advocating, and advancing cutting edge energy innovation policies to address global climate change, increase economic growth, and provide universal energy access.

“America’s best competitive advantage is our capacity to innovate,” Senator Coons says. “To solve our energy and climate challenges we need to promote innovation, not only in our laboratories, but in our policies as well. CCEI is committed to doing just that, and their work is already moving the conversation forward. I’m thrilled to join them as an Honorary Co-Chair and look forward to working together to support clean energy research, innovation, and entrepreneurship.”

“Senator Coons is one of our nation’s leaders in the areas of climate and energy innovation policy and a tremendous advocate for sensible solutions to the environmental challenges we face,” says Matthew Stepp, Executive Director of CCEI. “We are honored to have his assistance in our efforts to promote policies that can advance clean energy technology development and reduce the impacts of climate change.”

In addition, CCEI announced the inaugural members of its Strategic Advisory Board who […]

By |September 16th, 2014|Blog, Federal Policy|Comments Off|
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    The Role of the DOE National Labs in the 21st Century Innovation Economy

The Role of the DOE National Labs in the 21st Century Innovation Economy

Rayburn House Office Building
Room 2325
45 Independence Ave, SW
Washington, DC 20515

Tuesday, September 16, 2014
9AM – 10AM

Watch the event. 

Please join the Science and National Laboratory Caucus and the Center for Clean Energy Innovation for a breakfast briefing on the value of the Department of Energy (DOE) National Laboratory system in driving innovation and economic growth.

Since the 1940’s, the DOE National Laboratory system has been in the vanguard of America’s global innovation leadership. While their initial mission centered around the Manhattan Project, the Labs now conduct more than $12.5 billion in publicly funded research and development (R&D) on a wide range of national issues, including scientific discovery, high performance computing, energy innovation, manufacturing, and national security. In addition, the Labs collaborate with industry and universities, bringing its world-class capabilities to solve private sector and academic problems. Without a doubt, the Labs have played a central role in developing breakthrough science and technologies during the past 70 years.

Yet, the Labs are even more important in the rapidly changing 21st century innovation economy and keeping the United States at the cutting edge of science and technology. Please join the House Science and National Laboratory Caucus, the Center for Clean Energy Innovation, and panel […]

By |September 9th, 2014|Events|Comments Off|
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    Accelerating Sustainability: Demonstrating the Benefits of Connected Cars

Accelerating Sustainability: Demonstrating the Benefits of Connected Cars

Thomas Edison Conference Room
1101 K Street NW, Suite 610
Washington, D.C. 20005

August 28, 2014
9AM – 10:30AM

Watch the event webcast.

American’s love to drive. Whether it’s a passenger van heading to the beach for a family vacation or commuting to work, driving is a basic function of U.S. society. But America’s addiction to driving has consequences: on average the transportation sector consumes over 6 billion barrels of oil and emits roughly 1.7 billion metric tons of global warming greenhouse gases (GHG) per year, representing 30 percent of U.S. emissions.

Eliminating these GHGs is critically important to mitigating climate change. Yet it’s not as simple as consumers forgoing driving, particularly because most consumers are unwilling or unable to do so. Transformative technologies are needed to turn today’s gas-guzzling cars and trucks into low-carbon alternatives that provide consumers the same freedom to drive today without significant environmental impact.

As America gets ready to travel this Labor Day weekend, join the Digital Energy and Sustainability Solutions Campaign (DESCC), Information Technology, Industry Council (ITIC) and the Center for Clean Energy Innovation to discuss a new report by ITS America on the 16 smart transportation technologies that could create a sustainable transportation […]

By |August 7th, 2014|Events|Comments Off|

The Hill – U.S.-China Solar Trade Dispute

U.S.-China Solar Trade Dispute: Short-Term Profit vs. Long-Term Viability

Matthew Stepp and Michelle Wein
Published July 24, 2014

The United States and China are locked in a protracted solar trade war that has caused controversy within the solar industry. While some deride the war as harmful, the United States must continue to aggressively fight with all means necessary. Not taking action is irresponsibly shortsighted and threatens the long-term viability of the global solar industry.

Carbon Pricing & Renewables, What Does It All Mean?

CCEI Executive Director Matthew Stepp was interviewed by Talk Solar host Beth Bond on energy innovation policy – covering everything from fossil fuel subsidies, carbon pricing, and national vs. sub-national energy innovation strategies.

Listen to the interview.

Originally posted at Clean Technica.

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    Beyond Paris, Part 5: Pivoting International Climate Policy to Innovation

Beyond Paris, Part 5: Pivoting International Climate Policy to Innovation

By Matthew Stepp and Amanda Kibbe, Center for Clean Energy Innovation

In 2012, Jesse Jenkins and Matthew Stepp took stock of the global climate policy challenge in an online series titled The Future of Global Climate Policy. Since then the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) completed its Fifth Assessment and many countries are taking stock of their existing—and some argue, failed—climate policies. Looking to the future, the latest round of international climate negotiations is set to close in Paris at the end of 2015, potentially offering the end of one era of global climate policymaking and the start of something new. With an eye on the long-term impacts of the 2015 negotiations, Amanda Kibbe and Matthew Stepp take an updated look in a five-part series on the state of the climate challenge. Part 1Part 2Part 3, and Part 4.

Society must act quickly to implement policies that provide the world the tools it needs to cut carbon and put the world on a path for deep decarbonization. The more time we let pass without aggressive action, the higher […]

By |July 21st, 2014|Blog, Climate Change, International Policy|Comments Off|