Dave Santen

Viewers of Sunday’s 87th Academy Awards were treated to a spectacle of dazzle, drama and power straight out of the Pacific Northwest.

We’re speaking, of course, of the Coates Kokes-produced TV spot for CleanHydro, which debuted during the ceremony.*

“Snow Melts” is the latest in a series of four commercials for our client Northwest RiverPartners that tell the story of hydro by highlighting the power of water.

This great renewable resource provides affordable, clean electricity to residents throughout the Pacific Northwest.

In fact, the hydropower capacity along the Columbia and Snake rivers generates enough juice to power 14 Seattle-sized cities. That’s the equivalent of 25 million cups of coffee.**

Now, we could go on about the annual megawatts generated (14), or the tons of greenhouse gases produced (none), or its effective conversion rate of energy to power (a whopping 90%).

But that’s not storytelling. That’s recitation.

So how do we talk about energy in a meaningful way to viewers in Seattle, Portland, Eugene and Missoula?

Make the complex compelling.

Show how these this natural force—two parts hydrogen, one part oxygen—provides the backbone to life in the Northwest, including agriculture, commerce, recreation, shipping and clean air. Let nature do the work, and let images carry the story.

This was an especially rewarding project for our team, because it gave us a chance to show off our ability to produce high-end video content in-house, at an affordable price for our client.

We’ve pulled together a portfolio of the CleanHydro campaign, in which we took on everything from creating the brand and the website, to multimedia content and print collateral, and even managing some public relations. Check it out here. 

And if you are inspired to learn more about CleanHydro, visit www.cleanhydro.org.


*And also, Wild. Cheryl, Laura, Reese—you’re winners in our book.

**No, it isn’t. Unlike coffee, which knocks off around noon, hydro powers cities day and night.