Western Energy Alliance and Denver Zoo Partner to Promote Novel Gasification Technology

April 10, 2012

10-acre Elephant Exhibit and 'Poop-to-Power' Motorized Tuk Tuk Showcases Innovative and Clean Energy Source Solution


(DENVER) – Western Energy Alliance and Denver Zoo announced today it would partner to support the zoo's development of a biomass gasification system that converts human trash and animal waste into clean energy. This technology will create a highly efficient power system at Denver Zoo using natural gas and synthetic gas to start and run a new, patent-pending gasification energy system. To celebrate this partnership and raise awareness about the project, Western Energy Alliance and Denver Zoo will host a media-only preview on April 10, 2012 at 4:30 p.m. at a redesigned lobby exhibit in the ground floor atrium at 1700 Broadway in Denver.


"This lobby exhibit will visually showcase the many diverse uses clean-burning natural gas offers," said Tom Sheffield, Vice President, Western Division, Pioneer Natural Resources Company and Chair of Western Energy Alliance's Board of Directors. "The story of this ground-breaking gasification technology and using Denver Zoo's gasification prototype, a converted Tuk Tuk (motorized rickshaw) fromThailand, is a great way to show the public that natural gas can solve both economic and environmental challenges simultaneously," said Sheffield.


"Denver Zoo is very grateful for the financial support and encouragement that Western Energy Alliance and its members are providing us. Western Energy Alliance has been generous to provide this space so we can tell our story of creating clean energy solutions together," said Denver Zoo President/CEO Craig Piper.


Austin and Blake's Tuk Tuk, sponsored by the Autrey Foundation, was created to test the poop-to-power gasification technology planned for use in Denver Zoo's new 10-acre exhibit, Toyota Elephant Passage. This unique technology developed by three full-time Denver Zoo staff, is under provisional patent protection and will be the first to utilize a diverse on-site waste stream, a breakthrough that could change how the world manages waste and creates energy.


Who: Western Energy Alliance and Denver Zoo executives Tom Sheffield, Vice President, Western Division, Pioneer Natural Resources Company and Chair of Western Energy Alliance, and Craig Piper, President/CEO of Denver Zoo. Representatives of Mesa Energy Partners and Encana Oil and Gas (USA) Inc. will also be present to answer questions regarding their roles in the partnership.


What: Media Preview of Western Energy Alliance and Denver Zoo lobby exhibit showcasing a converted Tuk Tuk (motorized rickshaw) fueled by a patent-pending gasification system.


When: April 10, 2012, 4:30 p.m. MST


Where: Ground floor atrium at 1700 Broadway in Denver


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About Western Energy Alliance
Western Energy Alliance, founded in 1974 as the Independent Petroleum Association of Mountain States, is a non-profit trade association representing 400 companies engaged in all aspects of environmentally responsible exploration and production of oil and natural gas in the West. More information on Western Energy Alliance and its members is available at www.westernenergyalliance.org.


About Denver Zoo
Denver Zoo is home to 3,800 animals representing more than 650 species and is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). AZA accreditation assures the highest standards of animal care. A leader in environmental action, Denver Zoo is dedicated to ensuring the safety of the environment in support of all species and is the first U.S. zoo to receive ISO 14001 certification for the entire facility and operations. This international certification ensures the zoo is attaining the highest environmental standards. Since 1996, Denver Zoo has participated in 577 projects in 58 countries on all seven continents. In 2011 alone, Denver Zoo participated in 84 projects in 17 countries and more than $1 million in funds was spent by the zoo in support of animal conservation in the field. Learn more www.denverzoo.org.