Leaders in Water Sustainability Gather at LA Kretz Innovation Campus

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Gubernatorial Candidates John Chiang and Antonio Villaraigosa Shared Their Vision for a More Sustainable California at the Innovate x Water 2016 Conference

Los Angeles, CA—November 18, 2016— Water sustainability solutions and innovation were the hot topics this week with two significant events on California’s on-going drought held at Downtown LA’s La Kretz Innovation Campus. City and state leaders came out to address audiences at the Innovate x Water 2016 Conference, presented by CORO Southern California in partnership with the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) and Southern California Water Committee (SCWC). Later in the week, the Canadian Consulate General Los Angeles joined the Canadian Water Innovation Roadshow at the Campus, presenting fifteen Canadian water technology companies to Southern California.

Greg Good, Master of Ceremonies for Innovate x Water and Director of Infrastructure Services for the City of Los Angeles, introduced California Gubernatorial candidates John Chiang, California State Treasurer, and Antonio Villaraigosa, former Mayor of Los Angeles, who spoke on the water crisis and the need for innovative technologies.  

“North versus South, farmers against environmentalists, dams versus tunnels — the warring territorial and economic interests of a state comprised of 39 million people has resulted in a decades-long water stalemate that harms our economy, public health, and way of life,” said California State Treasurer John Chiang. “We need a reimagined approach to securing a future where each drop of water is valued and Californians have access to what they need. We get there by driving innovation and investments through better pricing policies, regulatory flexibility, and new funding mechanisms.”

“There is enough water,” said 41st Mayor of Los Angeles Antonio Villaraigosa. “There just isn’t enough political will yet to get the water where it needs to be, to make sure less water is wasted and more water is recycled. But if we come together – we can get this done. We’re a great state because we are not afraid to take on great tasks – like creating and saving hundreds of thousands of jobs by solving our water challenge.”

Speaking about the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator at the newly opened La Kretz Innovation Campus, a vision of Villaraigosa’s when he was Mayor, he added “This is an example of what is possible.” In addition to hosting ongoing events on building a sustainable future and green economy for Los Angeles, LACI is a cluster-driven organization with quarterly cluster meetings on Water, Energy Generation & Storage, Built Environment, Transportation, Waste & Sustainable Materials and Agriculture & Food Science.

LACI’s Water Cluster helps support and grow the water technology industry in the LA region. The initial goal for the cluster work is to decrease fragmentation and increase collaboration between all stakeholders involved in water sustainability. LACI’s vision is to be a platform for government organizations, non-profits, academic institutions and corporate companies to work together and forge innovative partnerships with an emphasis on the value that technology can bring to the water sector. The cluster meets quarterly, coupled with an on-going stream of water events at the Campus. The next quarterly Water Cluster meeting is on January 18, 2017.

The role new water technologies and civic organizations play in addressing the drought were addressed in panel sessions at this week’s event, followed by presentations by LACI’s cleantech portfolio companies focused on water sustainability. LACI portfolio companies, Ayyeka, Divining Lab LLC, Envi, Rain Systems, Vena Water, and Water Canary were among the presenting companies.

About LACI

The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) is a private non-profit organization helping to accelerate the commercialization of clean technologies by offering flexible office space, CEO coaching, mentoring, and access to a robust network of partnerships and capital. LACI was founded in 2011 as a cluster-driven economic development initiative supported by the City of Los Angeles, LADWP and the Community Redevelopment Agency of Los Angeles. Recognized as one of the most innovative business incubators in the world, LACI identifies local entrepreneurs across multiple cleantech business sectors and guides them to market, creating jobs that advance LA’s green economy. In just five years, LACI has helped 60 companies raise $80M in funding, created 1,150 jobs, and delivered more than $230M in long-term economic value for the City of Los Angeles. LACI operates out of the La Kretz Innovation Campus with satellite offices in Northridge, CA and Silicon Valley and is the organizer of GloSho and founder of the Network for Global Innovation NGIN. For additional information, please visit: laincubator.org  

La Kretz Innovation Campus and Advanced Prototyping Center

The La Kretz Innovation Campus, Los Angeles’ new cleantech innovation hub, is a place where entrepreneurs, engineers, scientists, and policymakers can collaborate, promote and support the development of clean technologies and LA’s green economy. Designed by John Friedman Alice Kimm Architects (JFAK), the fully renovated 60,000 square foot facility is located in the dynamic Arts & Innovation District of Downtown Los Angeles. The Campus comprises 3.2 acres owned by the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power and is approved for LEED Platinum rating, utilizing state-of-the-art green technology including a 175 kilowatt photovoltaic solar canopy, fast charger EV stations, bioswales, and LA’s first public greywater filtration and microgrid systems.

Media Contact:
Laurie Peters, lpeters@laci.org
LACI Communications Director
(818) 635-4101

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LA’s Clean Tech Incubator Has New Downtown Campus

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A project to nurture clean technology businesses opens a permanent campus in Downtown Los Angeles Arts District Friday.

The La Kretz Innovation Campus now houses the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator in a once-crumbling brick warehouse on Hewitt Street along the L.A. River. It’s been made over into a modern launch pad for new businesses that have the potential to create local clean tech jobs.

Startup companies can rent inexpensive working space, meeting rooms, and get access to a network of experts. The campus is named for real estate developer and philanthropist Morton La Kretz.

The nonprofit incubator project started in 2011 with backing from the city Community Redevelopment Agency and the Department of Water and Power. Early collaborators include local institutions at the intersection of energy, science and academia — JPL, UCLA, USC, Caltech and CSUN.

Since then more than 50 companies have attracted some $70 million in investments. Some of the companies hatched there test chargers for electric vehicles, and make eco-friendly food service plates and cups. One company makes motorized bicycles, another hires ex-inmates to dismantle electronic waste.