4:27pm

Thu February 10, 2011
Business

Former Colorado Governor Honored at Solar Summit

Solar energy industry leaders convening for an annual conference in Loveland are bestowing praise for former Colorado Governor Bill Ritter’s efforts to boost clean energy in Colorado.  The Boulder-based Colorado Solar Energy Industry Association gave Ritter its annual President’s Award at a luncheon Thursday. 

The Democrat ushered through more than 50 bills in the state legislature from 2007 to last year that the industry says helped boost development. 

Speaking at the conference, Ritter also praised utilities like Xcel Energy for their support in upping Colorado’s renewable energy standard to 30% by 2020. 

"As much as we can go back and forth and battle Xcel, so much of what we were able to accomplish over a four year period is directly related to an enlightened CEO and people inside Xcel who have been trying to move this conversation forward," Ritter said.

Ritter, who is now heading up the nearby Policy Center for the New Energy Economy at Colorado State University, said boosting clean energy has important national security and environmental implications.

The COSEIA's annual conference wraps up Friday.