Have an innovative business idea that you think could make a difference? Just need the cash to make it happen? Calling all university students interested in low-carbon technologies and entrepreneurship! The new economy is largely dependent on clean energy technology and the US Department of Energy is hosting a premier opportunity to pitch your ideas: The Regional Clean Energy Business Plan Competition.

Six regional competitions across the US will serve as platforms for students to transform great clean energy ideas into great businesses. You have a chance to bring your clean technologies to the market through creative business solutions.

Plan submissions will be accepted starting today, though regional deadlines vary, so be sure to check out your area’s submission deadline.

The regional competitions will be completed by May 1st, 2012. Panels of expert judges will select a winning team from each region to advance to the finals. The six regional winners will each receive $100,000 and a chance to compete for a National Grand Prize at a competition held at the Department of Energy in Washington, D.C., in early summer 2012. Click here for more detailed information. Make it happen: your clean tech idea can become a reality!

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About The Author

Scott Cooney

Scott Cooney (twitter: scottcooney) is an adjunct professor of Sustainability in the MBA program at the University of Hawai'i, green business startup coach, author of Build a Green Small Business: Profitable Ways to Become an Ecopreneur (McGraw-Hill), and developer of the sustainability board game GBO Hawai'i. Scott has started, grown and sold two mission-driven businesses, failed miserably at a third, and is currently in his fourth. Scott's current company has three divisions: a sustainability blog network that includes the world's biggest clean energy website and reached over 5 million readers in December 2013 alone; Pono Home, a turnkey and franchiseable green home consulting service that won entrance into the clean tech incubator known as Energy Excelerator; and Cost of Solar, a solar lead generation service to connect interested homeowners and solar contractors. In his spare time, Scott surfs, plays ultimate frisbee and enjoys a good, long bike ride. Find Scott on

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