We first featured Blackburn Energy back in October 2018, but we've had our eye on them for quite some time! Blackburn Energy has been located at CI Works for almost five years now.
Have you ever been annoyed by seeing a large diesel truck pulled over along the highway with the engine running and exhaust billowing out, or a truck at a grocery or other store doing deliveries / pickups – again with the engine running – and been annoyed either by the smell or more deeply by the potential environmental impact they seem oblivious to? Blackburn can solve that problem for both classes of trucks by installing a secondary power system for these vehicles, available even when the engine isn’t running. The driver uses could be to heat / cool the driver compartment, refrigeration when stopped, operating tailgates, and other auxiliary motors – all generated from a renewable energy source – that is the revolutionizing part. We love this story at CI Works!
The technology will revolutionize the trucking industry and along the way assist the industry in doing less environmental harm, and by the way, save some money. A challenge Blackburn continues to face is the lack of a clear US energy and environmental strategy. (Something as critical as the health of the environment keeps getting batted around from one presidency to the next. This is not new, and unfortunately does not provide a single financial framework including tax benefits, incentives, environmental regs – like EPA, treatment of carbon emissions and related penalties – that a company like Blackburn can benefit from. The ping pong ball just keeps getting batted state to state. This produces almost insurmountable uncertainty on the part of both the trucking industry – purchasers, and investors.)
Recent accomplishments by Blackburn Energy include:
Awards - Finalist for Business Association of New England Innovation Award in Environment and Sustainability Category.
Massachusetts Clean Energy Center - Innovate Mass Grant in 2019.
Sales and Installations are Growing – with more installed units onboard trucks, generating conclusive data as well as revenue. Have also achieved additional breadth in the applicable truck classes using the device, further expanding the market potential. The sales pipeline opportunities continue to grow.
Job Creation – Blackburn has doubled staff in 2019 with additions planned this year and worked with three interns over the past summer – providing exposure to the jobs of the future.
Blackburn also has developed a ‘show how’ model for the state of Massachusetts to emulate. They have received some early stage funding grants from the state – Mass Clean Energy Center. They have executed the grants and related reporting requirements - proving viability to both the company and the commercial readiness status of the product; located in Massachusetts and have remained here in Amesbury; have increased the number of jobs in Mass and in the cleantech sector; and have developed a supply chain made of to the extent possible of Massachusetts companies. In this case – made in Mass really means made in Mass!