UK looks to Oregon for green business partners
By Christina Williams, Sustainable Business Oregon
Sustainable Business Oregon
The United Kingdom says it can become a leader in sustainability while recovering from an economic crisis.
Over cocktails and cheese platters, the staff of the British Consulate mingled with leaders from Oregon's cleantech, green business and research communities Thursday night, the latest signal that the United Kingdom has a keen interest in partnering with Oregon businesses.
"I see a lot of similarities in our focus on sustainable industry," said Julian Evans, the consul general of the British Consulate in San Francisco, which counts the Pacific Northwest as part of its diplomatic territory.
Green Lite CEO Tim Miller, is looking to translate the relationship into a potential foothold in Europe, where narrow streets and dense populations provide an attractive market for Green Lite's diminutive vehicle.
Oregon and the United Kingdom share a focus on electric vehicles, with both governments helping to fund the charging infrastructure and providing incentives for EV purchases.
The two governments also share economic hardships that they hope to mitigate with a focus on renewable energy and green business.
The UK is a leader in wave energy, which was on display when Derrick Olsen, a global investment strategist, took a tour of the region in October.
"They've been very proactive in trying to make these connections," Olsen said. "And they were already quite aware of the wave energy resources here."
Scotland-based Aquamarine Power, which closed an investment of around $17 million last week, opened an office in Newport and is exploring the production of its wave energy technology, called Oyster, in Oregon.
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