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America's Next Eco-Star: The Cross-Campus Search Begins

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I recently wrote an op-ed in Politico about the remarkable work college students are doing across the country to drive clean energy and energy efficiency improvements on their campuses. As those students head back to school, it's time to showcase their efforts -- which is why I'm announcing the launch of America's Next Eco-Star, a national video contest that will recognize our next generation of clean energy and energy efficiency leaders!

I can't offer the sex appeal of Tyra Banks or the dance moves of the Jabbawockeez, but I can offer an all-expenses-paid trip to the 2012 Sustainable Futures Academy at the Salzburg Global Seminar in Austria and a summer fellowship in SmartPower's Washington, D.C., office, both prizes that the winner will receive (along with the famed title of America's Next Eco-Star, of course).

Rather than asking people to embarrass themselves on national television week after week, America's Next Eco-Star is looking for the next eco-savvy student, professor or college administrator to produce a quick, compelling video about his or her dedication to clean energy and campus energy efficiency. Every college or university can nominate up to three people, so only the most creative and committed energy leaders will cut it... and only one will win.

In case the prizes, personal sense of accomplishment and pure thrill of competition aren't enough, the winning contestant's campus sustainability director will receive $1,000 to spend on school sustainability efforts -- not to mention complete bragging rights.

To learn more about the online video competition and to see how you can compete for the chance to be crowned America's Next Eco-Star, visit