Clean Tech Business Writes the US Senate: Pass Legislation Now!

11/23/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

On the heels of President Obama's September 22 speech before the United Nations Climate Change Summit and with Congress debating legislation, sixty-nine private industry executives, investors, and business leaders from the clean technology sector have delivered a letter to the United States Senate calling for swift congressional action on an American Clean Energy & Security Act.

The signers comprise a wide range of leaders within the clean tech community, from established veterans such as venture capitalist Vinod Khosla and Rhone Resch, CEO of Solar Energy Industry Association, to newer entrepreneurs like Matt Golden of home remodeler Sustainable Spaces and Christian Okonsky of electric motor developer KLD Energy.

September 23, 2009

United States Senate
The Capitol
Washington, DC 20510

Dear Leaders Reid & McConnell & All US Senators:

We write you as the entrepreneurs, innovators, and investors of the growing clean technology economy to urge your support for an American Clean Energy and Security (ACES) Act. As new energy business leaders from across the country, we fully support the legislation's goals: to create clean energy jobs, achieve energy independence, reduce global warming pollution and transition to a clean energy economy.

A New Economic Engine & Jobs at Home.
Only occasionally does Congress have the opportunity to shape a brand new economy and spark long-lasting nationwide growth. The federal government has done it before - by building the transcontinental railroad in the middle of the Civil War, through the Marshall Plan after World War II, and by sparking the broadband Internet revolution in the 1990s. In the midst of the current recession and with billions of private dollars waiting to invest in the clean tech economy, your vote to pass ACES will free up capital, generate more than one million new jobs in every part of the United States (including your home state ), and create a new economic engine.

A Competitive Necessity.
Our competitors are not waiting on us to make the first move, having already adopted national policies and incentives like those in the ACES Act. China has arguably taken the world lead in green technology while pulling ahead of the U.S. in producing a new generation of cars, exporting solar panels, and increasing wind energy capacity. Germany and Spain are also outpacing the United States. We still have advantages, especially in our intellectual property rules and the development of our investor market, but the U.S. cannot afford to wait any longer.

A National Security Imperative.

Every year, the United States imports two-thirds of our oil from other countries, most of whom do not share our democratic values or our free market sensibilities. We send more than $250 billion overseas for an oil habit that has sent us to war and left us at the mercy of other nations' leaders. This is unacceptable when we have a clear path to keep our jobs and money here at home.

As business leaders in the clean energy economy, we ask respectfully for your decisive support to pass an American Clean Energy and Security Act this year. An ACES Act will create non-outsourceable jobs, serve our national security interests, and keep us competitive in the increasingly challenging international marketplace. It is imperative that our national leaders take action now in order to achieve these benefits and to ensure American leadership on this issue.


Omar Ahmad
CEO, SynCH Energy, Inc.

Bruce Anderson
CEO, Wilson TurboPower, Inc.

Jared Asch
General Manager, Efficiency First

John Balbach
Founder & Managing Partner, Global Alliances

David Bangs
President, Home Performance Washington

Josh Becker
Founder & General Partner, New Cycle Capital

Yobie Benjamin
Founder, True Carbon Inc.

Ben Bentley
CEO, The LeverEdge, Inc.

Erik Blachford
CEO, TerraPass

Julie Blackwell
Senior Director, Team Earth, Conservation International

Jon Bonanno
Chairman, Principle Power, Inc.

Tobin Booth
CEO, Blue Oak Energy, Inc.

Adam Boucher
Founder, Ethos Fund

Adam Browning
Executive Director, VoteSolar

Warren Byrne
President and CEO, Foresight Wind Energy, Inc.

Bob Cart
Founder & Executive Chairman, GreenVolts, Inc.

Barry Cinnamon
Founder & CEO, Akeena Solar, Inc.

Terry Clark
CEO, Finelite, Inc.

Wade Crowfoot
West Coast Political Director, Environmental Defense Fund

Michael Davis
President, US Pure Water Corporation

Frank deRosa
CEO, NextLight, Inc.

Cisco DeVries
President, Renewable Funding

David Ellington
Managing Partner, Emory Capital Group

Rob Ferber
CEO and Co-Founder, ElectronVault, Inc.

Bob Fishman
President and CEO, Ausra, Inc.

Paul Fox
Principal, CalCEF Clean Energy Angel Fund

Zach Gentry
CEO, Adura Technology, Inc.

T.J. Glauthier
Chairman, EPV Solar, Inc.

Matt Golden
President, Sustainable Places, Inc.

Harry Hagaman
President, Green Design Systems

Tim Healy
CEO, EnerNOC, Inc.

David Hochschild
Vice President of External Relations, Solaria, Inc.

Danny Kennedy
President, Sungevity , Inc.

Vinod Khosla
Founder, Khosla Ventures

Felix Kramer
Founder, CalCars

Craig Lewis
Founding Principal, RightCycle, Inc.

Richard Lowenthal
CEO, Coulomb Technologies, Inc.

Tim Ludwig
Partner, Ohana Capital

Linda Maepa
Co-Founder and COO, ElectronVault, Inc.

Tom McCalmont
Chair, SolarTech; CEO, Real Goods Solar, Inc.

Ed Murray, Ph.D.
Principal, Clean Tech Consulting

Rex Northen
Executive Director, Clean Tech Open

Genevieve Nowicki
Director of Government Relations, Solar Power Partners

Christian Okonsky
CEO, KLD Energy, Inc.

Fergal O'Moore
Vice President of Marketing and Business Development, OCS Energy, Inc.

Jack Oswald
CEO, SynGest, Inc.

Bruce Pasternack
Venture Partner, CMEA Capital

Sunil Paul
Founder, Spring Ventures

Doug Payne
Executive Director (acting),
SolarTech Consortium

Field Pickering
Managing Director, North America, Cool NRG International

Kim Polese
CEO, SparkSource, Inc.

Melanie Putnam Chief Operating Officer, Green Vehicles, Inc.

Stacey Reineccius
Chairman, Powergetics, Inc.

Rhone Resch
President & CEO, Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA)

Dr. Steffen Rochel

Alan Salzman
CEO, Vantage Point Venture Partners

Kamran Shamsavari
President & CEO, Xandex, Inc.

Daniel Sherwood
President, 3 Prong Power, Inc.

Karl Simmons
CEO, GridSpeak, Inc.

Aaron Singer
CEO, Pacific Carbon Exchange

Ann Stovel
Vice-President of Business Development & Marketing, Synergy Conscious

Kevin Surace
President & CEO, Serious Materials

Brian Thompson
CEO, Powergetics, Inc.

Jeanne Trombly
Managing Director, Plug In

Tom Van Dyck, CIMA
Senior Vice President & Financial Consultant, SRI Wealth Management Group & RBC Wealth Management

Robert Walsh
CEO, Aurora Biofuels, Inc.

Dan Whaley
Founder & CEO, Climos, Inc.

Jason Wolf
North America Business Development Director, Better Place

Jonathan Wolfson
CEO, Solazyme, Inc