Rocky Mountain Institute Opens Application for the 2016 e-Lab Accelerator

SNOWMASS VILLAGE, Colo., Oct. 5, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Today, Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) opened the application process for the third annual e-Lab Accelerator event April 24–27, 2016 at Sundance Mountain Resort, Utah. The team application is available at

e-Lab Accelerator is an invitation-only, four-day working meeting to maximize and accelerate the impact of innovative projects working at the electricity system's distribution edge. Eligible projects tackle unique challenges that—when solved—can help drive the entire industry forward, including:

  • New Business Models: Projects exploringe new utility business models, market structures, and regulatory efforts focused on maximizing the value of distributed energy resources (DERs).
  • Energy Innovation Districts: Projects demonstratinge or piloting innovative local DER solutions such as microgrids, downtown clean-energy zones, net-zero districts, and others.
  • Rate Design and DER Value Creation: Projects tacklinge new rate designs, compensation mechanisms, deployment strategies, and engagement programs focused on DER value creation.

Accelerator will take these projects to the next level by immersing project teams in a 'change lab' environment, similar to RMI's e-Lab, which has a three-year track record of delivering transformative change across North America. The approach applies collaborative methods, exercises, and subject-matter expertise to help unlock unique opportunities to solve complex problems at the cutting edge of electricity industry transformation. At e-Lab Accelerator, trained facilitators and technical experts from RMI and Reos Partners, plus a roster of nationally renowned e-Lab faculty members, will provide customized content, training, and tailored feedback to each team's unique project.

"Rocky Mountain Institute's e-Lab Accelerator was a transformational experience for our project team. We hoped to clarify our vision, gain language and tools to help us communicate that vision, and establish a one- to two-year work plan to turn that vision into a reality," said Chris Ball, Energy Efficiency Director for the City of Bloomfield (IA). "By the end of the week we had accomplished those goals, but we gained much more. Accelerator is certainly a highlight of the past year. I expect it will be one of the best experiences of my career."

Selected Accelerator teams will benefit from:

  • A diverse, expert faculty featuring notable experts in regulatory transformation, portfolio design for renewable resources, transition strategies for energy system change, and venture capital in electricity, among other subjects.
  • A transformative approach that fosters deep engagement, collaboration, and innovation within and across institutional boundaries to tackle complex problems. These approaches are field-tested and have helped drive impact in areas where challenges are so complex that no single actor is capable of developing solutions alone.
  • A highly interactive agenda that maximizes opportunities for meaningful project work and individual learning through facilitated project team engagement.

The application process opens October 2015 and closes January 4, 2016. Submitted applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Successful applications will be sent a formal invitation on a rolling basis, with all projects selected by February 15, 2016.

"For the past two years, we have had an impressive roster of teams eager to drive forward projects that benefit their communities, and drive broader electricity transformation by proving what's possible with distributed energy resources," said Leia Guccione, a manager with RMI's electricity practice.

Applications are available at To request additional information, visit

About Rocky Mountain Institute

Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI)—an independent nonprofit founded in 1982—transforms global energy use to create a clean, prosperous, and secure low-carbon future. It engages businesses, communities, institutions, and entrepreneurs to accelerate the adoption of market-based solutions that cost-effectively shift from fossil fuels to efficiency and renewables. In 2014, RMI merged with Carbon War Room (CWR), whose business-led market interventions advance a low-carbon economy. The combined organization has offices in Snowmass and Boulder, Colorado; New York City; Washington, D.C.; and Beijing.

About e-Lab

The Electricity Innovation Lab (e-Lab) brings together thought leaders and decision makers from across the U.S. electricity sector to address critical institutional, regulatory, business, economic, and technical barriers to the economic deployment of distributed resources. A multi-year "change lab," e-Lab regularly convenes its members to identify, test, and spread practical solutions to the challenges inherent in these questions. e-Lab is a joint collaboration, not a consensus organization, convened by RMI, with participation from stakeholders across the electricity industry.

CONTACT: Nicole Arnone (303) 245-1003 media@rmi.orgSource:Rocky Mountain Institute