That’s the idea behind the new clean energy hub launched by Chambers for Innovation, said executive director Diane Doucette.
“There’s no sense reinventing the wheel,” she said.
The online community of local chambers of commerce can help connect city economic developers around the country so they can share their innovative ideas and how they launched their clean energy programs, Doucette said.
The hub is designed to empower local chambers and businesses to improve their bottom line through clean energy projects and access to expert info.
It’s a good opportunity for those chambers like the ones in Grand Junction, Colo., Salt Lake City and Austin, Texas, that have already launched successful solar energy adoption programs to lead by example.
“When Grand Junction works out an agreement to work with SunPower, we want to share something like that so other communities can possibly replicate it,” Doucette said.
Salt Lake City recently launched a solar-powered bike sharing program. And the Web portal offers other member chambers insight and guidance so they start something similar in their communities.
“This is the first time all of this information is published in one place,” Doucette said. “Chambers will be able to talk to each other about reproducing programs.”
The new organization counts 168 local chambers of commerce as members, representing more than 160,000 businesses, Doucette said.
There are 6,500 local chambers of commerce across the country representing more than 7 million member businesses.
Chambers are aware that clean energy technology like solar is a growing economic driver and adopting best practices could help to attract companies in that expanding industry to their communities, Doucette said.
It’s not just clean energy businesses that are attracted to communities that embrace new energy, but all kinds of businesses are increasingly drawn to communities making green changes, she said.
That makes the new hub a great resource for chambers, she said.