CRES Activities & Initiatives
Tour of Solar Homes | Fairs/Presentations | Awards | Initiatives |
Annual Conference | Annual Meeting Highlights | Info Requests
Our group advocates widespread use of solar technology for clean energy generation
Photos: Dave Bowden
CRES has been a sponsor of Earth Day activities, and our policies promote sustainable environmental practices Our volunteers convinced the Colorado Public Utilities Commission to order construction of a 162 megawatt wind farm in southeastern Colorado.
The Colorado Renewable Energy Society (CRES) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the beneficial adoption of renewable energy and energy efficiency in the state. CRES is a chapter of the American Solar Energy Society and represents 550 members statewide.

We hold monthly meetings, an annual conference, organize the Colorado Tour of Solar Homes  in October, and participate in various initiatives to promote the adoption of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies in Colorado. We also give annual recognition to Colorado builders, architects, engineers, and building owners for innovative of use renewable energy in the Colorado Renewable Energy in Buildings Awards. 

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Monthly Meetings

NCRES holds monthly meetings featuring expert speakers and panelists on renewable energy and energy efficiency topics, usually held at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory Visitor's Center in Golden. These meetings are open and free to the public. See the Event calendar for time and location. The CRES News offers current renewable energy information, as well as program, speaker, and schedule information for our monthly meetings.

Highlights of Monthly Meetings in 2001

Drawing our largest crowd ever at the NREL Visitor's Center at over 70 people, the April 2001 panel of Ron Lehr, John Nielsen, Steve Andrews, and Ron Larson explained how CRES and the Land and Water Fund of the Rockies successfully persuaded the Colorado Public Utilities Commission to include wind power as part of Xcel Energy's rate base. The plant, to be located near Lamar in southeast Colorado, is currently being planned and sited. 

In July, and again in November, CRES teamed up with the Home Energy Assistance Team and the Denver Museum of Nature and Science to hold public presentations at the Phipps IMAX Theatre. July's meeting featured a presentation on global warming by Colorado Energy Science Center's (CESC) Pat Keegan and "Methane Madness," a terrific talk by Randy Udall of Aspen's Community Office for Resource Efficiency.

November's event focused on conservation, as five speakers at the meeting offered more than 80 years experience working in the field of energy efficiency in residential construction. CRES thanks Steve Andrews, Technical Director, E-Star Colorado, Doug Swartz, Energy Services Engineer, Ft. Collins Utilities, Rob deKieffer, Boulder Design Alliance, and Rich Moore, of Sun Power, Inc. for generously offering their time and talents to our members.

Some of our meetings are listed in the Denver Post's SciSpeak calendar on Sundays, sending CRES' message of renewable energy and energy efficiency to a widespread audience. 
Drawing our largest crowd ever, at over 70 people, the April 2001 panel explained how CRES and the Land and Water Fund of the Rockies representatives convinced the Colorado Public Utilities Commission to include wind power as part of Xcel Energy's rate base.

Board and Committee Meetings

CRES Board meetings are sometimes held on the day of the monthly meeting and are open to CRES membership only.

Annual Meeting and Banquet

2002 Annual Meeting Highlights

President Megan Edmunds reviews CRES' 2001 accomplishments and introduces newly elected board members at the Jefferson Unitarian Church on Saturday, Feb.16. Ron Larson surprises Paul Notari with the CRES 2001 Outstanding Service Award. Ron's service to CRES was recognized with the same award last year, and we intend to establish a tradition where previous award winners introduce the new honorees. Our keynote speaker, outgoing ASES Board Chairman Chuck Kutscher, offers his vision of America's clean energy future.

NCRES 2001 Outstanding Service Awards
The CRES "Outstanding Service Award" is given each year "In recognition of many and exceptional contributions to the advancement of renewable energy technologies in the State of Colorado and to the Colorado Renewable Energy Society". The award winners are chosen by a subcommittee of the CRES Board. In previous years, the honor has gone to a single person, but this year the group was in unanimous agreement that there should be two recipients: Ron Lehr and Paul Notari.

Ron Lehr was CRES' pro bono lawyer in a major legal win for renewables this past year  in which the Colorado Public Utility Commission unanimously agreed that a 162 MW wind system was a least cost option for Colorado. Ron was previously Chairman of the PUC and has extensive and continuing experience across the country on regulatory issues involving renewables. In accepting this award, Ron graciously mentioned other CRES members who had contributed to CRES and the testimony of other partner groups. But all of CRES knows well that this major advance for renewables in Colorado would have been impossible without Ron Lehr's extraordinary effort. Because of his strong commitment to renewables, Ron will be again helping CRES in the coming months to prevent a possible "gutting" of the present IRP rules. Paul Notari is not only a founder of CRES, but has also been our only Treasurer and the only Editor of the CRES monthly Newsletter. Paul is famed for the detailed presentations on the CRES budget and account balances that he prepares each month for the Board. There is never a question of balancing - and he keeps the board well aware of the need for pragmatism.  Paul brings a national perspective to CRES as well, having been President of our parent group, the American Solar Energy Society, and continues as an active participant in ASES policy development. Many positive remarks were heard about Paul's comments upon receiving this award - which emphasized his surprise that CRES had grown rapidly - and his assurance that CRES' growth will continue. The CRES Board is pleased that we were able to keep this award totally secret - not easy with Paul expressing concern to several about a possible CRES failure to develop an award this year.

A standing vote of thanks was given to CRES' Past President Doug Balcomb for graciously donating both his time and materials in preparing the award plaques. 

Written by Ron Larson; Photos / captions by Dave Bowden

Colorado Organizations that Work With CRES
Links to these organizations
  • Boulder Energy Conservation Center 
  • Built Green Colorado (Home Builders Association of Metro Denver) 
  • Colorado Association of Nonprofit Organizations 
    (CRES is a member organization of CANPO. In March 2002, CRES will sponsor a CANPO seminar on fundraising
  • Colorado Energy Science Center 
  • Colorado Environmental Business Alliance
  • Colorado Environmental Coalition
  • NCRES is a member organization of the Colorado Environmental Coalition.
  • Colorado Public Interest Research Group
  • Colorado Solar Energy Industries Association
  • Community Office for Resource Efficiency, Aspen
  • E-Star Colorado - Energy Rated Homes of Colorado
  • Home Energy Assistance Team
  • Land and Water Fund of the Rockies
  • Rocky Mountain Institute
  • Solar Energy International, Carbondale

Colorado Renewable Energy Society 

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