This week’s Current Climate, which every Saturday brings you the latest news about the business of sustainability. Sign up to get it in your inbox every week.
Earlier this month, analyst firm Pitchbook published its analysis of venture investments into clean energy in 2022. The firm found that 2022 was a record year for the sector, with investments hitting $16.2 billion for the year, just barely topping 2021’s $16 billion. A driving factor behind part of the surge in investment was the war in Ukraine, which highlighted the need for energy resilience. That said, as the year went on and the energy sector looked more stable, the fourth quarter saw a year over year drop of 46.5% in terms of venture capital raised in the sector.
The report highlights two areas that saw major deals in the fourth quarter and seemed poised for further growth: green hydrogen and grid-scale batteries for renewables. Another area of interest for VCs are companies involved in management and analytics of the power grid.
You can read the full report here.
The Big Read
‘On Thin Ice’: World About To Pass Critical Temperature Threshold, UN Warns
United Nations scientists warned Monday the world is on track to pass a critical temperature threshold believed to be essential to combat climate change by the early 2030s—as scientists resound the alarm for drastic cuts to greenhouse gas emissions they say are necessary to prevent catastrophic droughts, heat waves and sea-level rise.
Read more here.
Discoveries And Innovations
Climate change could be driving a potentially deadly ocean-dwelling bacteria capable of causing “flesh-eating” infections up along the East Coast of the United States.
Tomato farmers can reduce the amount of insecticides they’re using by instead introducing tropical tent web spiders, which can effectively control pests that feast on tomatoes.
Sustainability Deals Of The Week
Ammonia Power: New York-based startup Amogy, which is developing power solutions built around ammonia, announced that it raised a $139 million series B-1 round, which was led by SK Innovation.
Battery Storage: Spearmint Energy announced this week that it’s acquired a 900 megawatt portfolio of battery storage assets in Texas.
Sustainable Personal Care: L’Oreal has joined Geno, Unilever and Kao Corporation to become the fourth founding investor in a Geno-led venture that’s aimed at developing sustainable ingredients for personal care products such as cosmetics.
On The Horizon
Later this year, the United States is going to see a new nuclear plant go online for the first time since 1996. Georgia Power’s new plant, which will be southeast of Augusta, Georgia, will have two nuclear reactors each with a capability of over 1,000 megawatts. Commercial operation of the plant is expected to begin this spring and both reactors will be online before the end of the year.
What Else We’re Reading This Week
The world faces a water crisis — 4 powerful charts show how (Nature)
Super Glue could make it easier to recycle plastic (Popular Science)
It’s Actually a Huge Problem that Aerosol Pollution Is Plummeting (Heatmap)
Green Transportation Update
For years. Tesla buyers have had to wait weeks if not months for their new electric car to be delivered. Not right now. If you want a new Model 3 sedan, one could be parked in your driveway within a week—thanks to a glut of inventory right before the quarter ends and before federal EV tax credit rules change.
The Big Transportation Story
Why Charging An Electric Car Will Soon Come With A Slurpee
7-Eleven sees a business opportunity to power up EVs and plans to own a charging network in parking lots at its stores in the U.S. and Canada, particularly in areas that have previously lacked access to public charging. It will allow owners the opportunity to grab coffee, a sandwich or slurpee while a 7Charge station powers up their vehicle’s battery pack.
Read more here.
More Green Transportation News
Elon Musk Is Alienating Future Tesla Buyers, Heatmap Poll Finds (Heatmap)
Ford’s BlueOval City Creates Training Program, Aims To Build 500,000 Electric Trucks Annually
Upshift Offers Fractional Car Subscriptions, Where Does That Fit In The Mobility Future
Troubles Loom If Europeans Are Denied Cheap Electric Cars
Witricity And ABT E-Line Partner On Aftermarket Wireless EV Charging
Does First Electric Ford Explorer Have What It Takes For European Domination?
Europe Looks To Allow Synthetic Fuels For Cars After All
Nordic EV Fast Charger Company Kempower On Fast Track To U.S.
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