Renewable Energy and Clean Technology

This Web site is the legacy of a research and education outreach initiative entitled, Renewable Energy for Rural Economic Development (RERED), funded by grants from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Wind Powering America program between 2005 and 2013. The initiative resulted in numerous peer-reviewed articles and reports (many co-authored with students), two documentaries, two conferences, video cases, news commentaries, and presentations for policymakers, business groups and communities across the state of Utah and the country.

Marketing professors Dr. Edwin R. Stafford and Dr. Cathy L. Hartman (emeritus) directed RERED (also known as the Center for the Market Diffusion of Renewable Energy and Clean Technology). The purpose of the initiative was to engage in practical research and outreach to help establish wind power and other renewable energy and clean technology innovations into the marketplace. Having been research collaborators since 1995, Stafford and Hartman developed their expertise in sustainable entrepreneurship and marketing with the intent that their research and outreach would make a difference for Utah’s and America’s energy future.

New research and other outcomes continue from RERED, and these are updated in the Research and News Items section of this website.

   

Research

Hartman and Stafford published a series of peer-reviewed managerial research articles tracing the development of wind power in the state of Utah and on broader green marketing and sustainable entrepreneurship issues. Their research developed managerial frameworks and practical ‘lessons learned’ for action for marketers, business entrepreneurs, policymakers, and community leaders. Some publications related to RERED’s mission are as follows:

Peer-reviewed documentaries

Stafford and Hartman collaborated with Ms. Michelle Nunez of GreenTech Films to co-produce and co-write two peer-reviewed, 30-minute documentary shorts. The purpose of the documentaries has been to educate policymakers, business and community leaders, and citizens about the market, policy, and social barriers facing wind energy and America’s transition toward a cleaner, domestic, and more price-stable energy future.

The first, Wind Uprising, premiered at the Huntsman School’s Renewable Energy, Cleantech, and Sustainable Business “Partners in Business” Seminar in April 2010. It tells the story of the four-year struggle to establish Utah’s first wind power project at the mouth of Spanish Fork Canyon through the eyes of the wind developers who made it happen. It is the first documentary of its kind, showing the entrepreneurial process of developing a wind project and kick-starting a new clean energy industry in the state. Narrated by Senator Jake Garn, Wind Uprising won two film festival awards and another from Windustry, and it has screened over 150 times across the country, from Hawaii to Vermont. It is available on DVD and is commonly used as an outreach and education tool in schools, universities, and communities contemplating local wind energy development. See www.winduprisingmovie.com.

The second film, Scaling Wind, premiered at the Intermountain Bioneers Conference in November 2013 and is now being released nationally in 2014. Scaling Wind explains how America can procure 20 percent of its electricity from wind energy through smart, stable energy policy and transmission development. The film provides the back story of the 20 percent vision based on comments made by President George W. Bush after his “We’re addicted to oil” State of the Union Address in 2006. The Bush Administration’s U.S. Department of Energy published a roadmap of how the nation could achieve 20 percent wind by 2030, and Scaling Wind features interviews with governors, energy experts, landowners, and other “heroes” in a variety of states working to realize this great national goal. Narrated by Major General Michael Lehnert, the film highlights how the state of Iowa has come to procure over 20 percent of its electricity from wind power through a Renewable Energy Standard and how the state of Montana built the first merchant transmission line to distribute 600 MWs of wind-generated power to the Western grid in 50 years. A key theme of the documentary is that wind power and renewable energy have strong bipartisan support in many states, providing important lessons for mapping our nation’s energy future. See a trailer for Scaling Wind.

Career accelerator for students

RERED provided students research and hands-on marketing opportunities as career accelerators. Hartman and Stafford supervised graduate students on economic impact analyses for wind power development in Utah (see their reports in the Research and News Items section), market research for field study projects for renewable energy-related businesses and organizations, masters thesis research, and other academic research. Students have presented their research and analyses before policymakers (e.g., San Juan County Commission), at renewable energy conferences (e.g., Harvesting Energy Network, USU’s Sustainable Energy and Climate Initiatives Conference), and other organizations and community groups (e.g., Utah Wind Working Group). Students have also co-authored journal articles (e.g., Business Horizons, Solutions Journal) and U.S. Department of Energy reports. Many of their students eventually entered careers in renewable energy and sustainability, recruited by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Wasatch Wind, First Wind, WSP Group, and Intermountain Wind & Solar.