Evaluating state clean energy policies with SPOT: the State Policy Opportunity Tracker

SPOT for clean energy

The Center for the New Energy Economy at Colorado State University and The Nature Conservancy have released the State Policy Opportunity Tracker (SPOT) for Clean Energy at www.spotforcleanenergy.org.

The SPOT for Clean Energy is a publicly available database that allows users to quickly review the status of 38 clean energy policies across all 50 states. It includes policies in the areas of renewable energy, energy efficiency, financing, infrastructure and transportation.

Benchmarking clean energy policies

The SPOT for Clean Energy is not a score card. Instead, it benchmarks clean energy policies, enabling the user to analyze both the status quo for a state and where there may be opportunities for future growth on clean energy. It draws from data sources of 18 organizations, including the Department of Energy, the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE) and the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE).

The site also provides analysis describing key components of each policy, as well as the origin of the data used to assess state gaps. Most importantly, all the information available on the site is free, requires no login, and is fully downloadable.

Bill Ritter Jr., director of CSU’s Center for the New Energy Economy and the 41st Governor of Colorado, notes that “when we look at where clean energy policy has advanced, overwhelmingly states have led the way. We believe that trend will continue. This site enables state policy makers to analyze their current state policies, and how they can go further, in a way that has not previously existed.”

“The Nature Conservancy has programs in all 50 states, and has always believed that successful state and federal policy starts with good information,” says Lynn Scarlett, TNC’s Managing Director of Public Policy and former Deputy Secretary of the Interior. “Business and community leaders are eager to transition to a clean energy economy, and the information available through SPOT helps identify the policy gaps that must be filled to get us there.”

Organizations behind the site

The Center for the New Energy Economy (CNEE), part of the CSU Energy Institute, is a privately-funded initiative led by Ritter at CSU and is assisted by a team of energy and environmental policy experts. CNEE provides strategy and technical assistance to governor’s offices, legislators, regulators, utility companies and stakeholders that will facilitate America’s transition to a clean energy economy.

The Nature Conservancy is a leading conservation organization working around the world to protect ecologically important lands and waters for nature and people.  To date, the Conservancy and its more than one million members have been responsible for the protection of more than 119 million acres of land and thousands of rivers worldwide. Visit The Nature Conservancy online at www.nature.org.

Contacts for more information

Jeff Lyng, Senior Policy Advisor, Center for the New Energy Economy, 303-818-2302,


Geraldine Henrich-Koenis, Media Director, The Nature Conservancy, 703-841-3939, ghenrich-koenis@tnc.org