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Opinion

A Wave of Green Investment is Starting to Bloom

Climate change is here. It’s ugly, it’s brutal, and more importantly, it’s only going to get worse.

By Theo de Monchy Strategy

Climate change is here. It’s ugly, it’s brutal, and more importantly, it’s only going to get worse. For decades, governments and businesses have ignored the experts, tiptoed around the science, and applied bandaids rather than implementing full-scale social and commercial surgery to combat the damage done to mother nature. 

It’s easy to feel pessimistic when we compare the fragility of our man-made world to the raw power of our planet. Aside from the omni-present pandemic, 2021 has been marked by a myriad of climate disasters, from earthquakes and volcanic eruptions to fires and flooding. Most recently this was exhibited by Hurricane Ida and her 150mph winds as they tore through New Orleans. In fact, according to The Washington Post, ~1 in 3 Americans experienced a climate disaster, this summer. The evidence is clear: we need to act.

Thankfully, change is beginning to permeate. It’s slow to be sure, but it’s picking up speed each and every year, hinting towards a brighter, more optimistic tomorrow. Specifically, we’re talking about the shift being see in investments, and the waves of money beginning to flood into green tech and climate-friendly startups. 

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According to an article in Bloomberg Green, a recent funding round closed by “two alternative asset managers - TPG and Brookfield - closed a combined $12.4 billion in climate investment funds.” The article continues that this is “more committed in a single day than used to be raised in years.” Pitchbook further confirmed this in a report stating that global investors had closed as many climate-focused funds by June 2021 than were raised in the past five years combined. “The flood of capital has lead to a remarkable first half of the year for VC-backed climate tech companies, which have raised more than $14.2 billion worldwide - 88% of the total for 2020.”

This sentiment was further alluded to in an article in the Financial Times, during an interview with Martin Roscheisen. Having “seen the dotcom boom and bust after studying computer science at Stanford with Google’s Larry Page and Sergey Brin,” Roscheisen believed that green energy “would be the next revolution to create fortunes for investors in Silicon Valley.” He stated that “More and more venture capitalists [have] recognised clean tech as a category, and started piling [money] into that.” 

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Whether people are motivated by morals or money, the fact remains that investment and innovation in green tech can only benefit us (obviously with the proviso that it isn’t destructive in the process). The world has too long been beholden to unsustainable practices that, while enabling unprecedented human advancement, have also bought about a crisis unseen in the history of modern humanity. 

However, seeing the moguls of Silicon begin to pour billions into green tech gives us a little faith, and is hopefully indicative of a wider trend in industry. As @immad tweeted, “exponential innovation is needed to solve climate change”.

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