CEEM announces new pilot to grow clean energy businesses and jobs

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Grid Catalyst is the first accelerator to focus on clean energy solutions for northern climates 


MINNEAPOLIS, MINN – Clean Energy Economy MN (CEEM) is thrilled to announce the launch of Grid Catalyst, the first and only Midwest clean energy accelerator focused on demonstrating and scaling innovative solutions for northern climates.

Grid Catalyst will cultivate the next generation of clean energy jobs and accelerate deployment of climate solutions. Entrepreneurs and small businesses with high-impact ideas will be connected to the extensive support and demonstration opportunities needed to reach commercialization. 

“Accelerator programs catalyze new leadership, in­­vestment, jobs, and in this case, advance positive climate action,” says program founder Nina Axelson, who has nearly 20 years of experience with energy utilities and business sustainability. “Too often, energy innovation gets stuck between the lab and the marketplace, because we lack opportunities to demonstrate in real-world applications. When we can prove what’s possible, we can transform the market.” 

Key points to note: 

·       Minnesota is uniquely positioned to leverage its robust energy sector, research institutions, and policy environment to become a top market for clean energy deployment and manufacturing.

·       Grid Catalyst’s mission is to accelerate clean energy innovation and deployment by addressing one of the most significant barriers to small businesses and big ideas: demonstration.  

·       Selected entrepreneurs and emerging companies will work with demonstration partners to resolve early adoption uncertainty and will be paired with mentors and investors with extensive energy experience. 

·       The Grid Catalyst cohort application will be available in early fall. 

·       Businesses accepted into the inaugural cohort will be provided with resources to develop their value proposition and ready their solution for demonstration in 2022. 

“Minnesota’s innovation ecosystem is strong, but there’s a sizable and unmet need when it comes to piloting and demonstrating clean technologies in search of validation in the market,” says CEEM Executive Director Gregg Mast. “Grid Catalyst is positioned to do just that, particularly with solutions that work well in cold climates. I’m excited to see the influx of innovation and jobs that will result from this important effort.”

Learn more about Grid Catalyst’s mission here. 

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About Clean Energy Economy MN (CEEM): CEEM is an industry-led 501(c)(3) nonprofit representing the business case for clean energy in Minnesota. CEEM provides a unified voice for clean energy business across the state. Our mission is to provide educational leadership, collaboration, and policy analysis that accelerates clean energy market growth and smart energy policies. 

About Grid Catalyst: A signature program of CEEM, Grid Catalyst is the first and only Midwest clean energy accelerator focused on demonstrating and scaling innovative solutions for northern climates. Grid Catalyst cultivates the next generation of clean energy jobs and accelerates deployment of market-ready climate solutions.