Crosscut article: Meet 4 young leaders changing Northwest environmentalism

This year’s NW Energy Coalition honorees are part of a new enviro band that blends conservation, climate activism and sustainable communities.

By Martha Basking

Call them the advance guard in our evolving clean energy revolution. One plays Captain Kilowatt on his home turf in Idaho. Another heads Washington’s largest community energy efficiency program. A third skirted a career in nuclear energy to become an energy efficiency advisor at Washington’s largest utility. The fourth uses affordable, clean energy to tackle joblessness and environmental and social justice issues.

Meet Ben Otto with the Idaho Conservation League, Tara Anderson with Sustainable Works, Gus Takala with Puget Sound Energy and Jessica Finn Coven of Climate Solutions. These NW Energy Coalition’s “4 Under Forty” award winners were honored recently at a Bullitt Center ceremony.

The NW Energy Coalition has been promoting clean energy policy with regional utilities, regulators and policymakers for 30-plus years. The “4 Under Forty” awards are meant to inspire others to take up the clean, affordable energy mantle. This year’s honorees represent a new environmental movement, one that incorporates conservation, climate and utility activism, and sustainable jobs for sustainable communities. For these young leaders, the clean energy future is now.

Read more…