Demand for advanced energy technologies and services continues to grow in Arkansas, as illustrated by the 2018 Annual Report from the Arkansas Advanced Energy Association and its educational affiliate, the Arkansas Advanced Energy Foundation. A review of 2018 activity shows the economic impact of Arkansas’s advanced energy industry and business leaders’ active engagement in policy and business initiatives to further expand the market.

AAEA, the business voice for advanced energy in Arkansas, remains focused on policies that encourage the growth of the advanced energy economy and workforce, industry leaders said.

“It is a pivotal time for Arkansas’s advanced energy industry. Demand for advanced energy technologies is growing alongside innovations that are driving down costs” said Gary McChesney,  Chief Technology Officer for FutureFuel Chemical Company in Batesville and Chairman of the AAEA Board of Directors.  “Forward-looking business, government and community leaders and homeowners are pursuing these resources in record numbers in order to meet customers’ expectations, generate economic development and reduce costs. In 2019, AAEA will continue our efforts to encourage the advanced energy market’s expansion with an active presence before the 92nd General Assembly and Arkansas Public Service Commission. Thank you to all members for your industry leadership.”

AAEF has established a reputation as the leading source for well-researched, fact-based data on the Arkansas advanced energy economy and convener of educational programming where advanced energy leaders and other influencers discuss Arkansas’s energy landscape and opportunities for the future.

“The electricity sector is in the midst of a fundamental change. Advanced energy solutions have become cost competitive (or cheaper) than traditional sources and the underlying technological innovations show no signs of slowing down” says Douglas Hutchings, CEO of Picasolar and Chairman of the AAEF Board of Directors. “This kind of disruption can be seen here in Arkansas as our state’s entrepreneurs are contributing on the local, regional, national, and even international levels. This is an exciting time for our industry, and I am proud of the work AAEF is doing to shine a light on the benefits of these resources.”

The organizations’ success is due to the valuable partnerships established with members and key partners, executive director Katie Laning Niebaum noted.

“AAEA members – from business leaders to government officials to researchers – are driving the state’s transition to a new energy economy,” Niebaum said. “AAEA will remain focused on initiatives that encourage the deployment of advanced energy technologies and allow the industry to continue its role as a key contributor to the state’s economy.”