Category: In The News

CONGRESSWOMAN BARRAGAN INTRODUCES FIRST-OF-ITS KIND BILL TO ESTABLISH ELECTRIC-VEHICLE CAR SHARING PROGRAM FOR PUBLIC HOUSING

WASHINGTON, D.C. Today Congresswoman Nanette Díaz Barragán (CA-44) introduced the EVs For All Act to establish an innovative grant program at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to support electric vehicle car sharing for public housing residents. The program would help public housing authorities and local governments invest in electric vehicles (EV), EV charging stations, community education and outreach, and other services and incentives to provide access to EVs for public housing residents.

“The success of our clean energy future requires that every resident, regardless of income, is included in the electric vehicle transformation,” Congresswoman Barragán said. “The EVs for All Act would provide resources for low-income residents in my district and around the country that are often left out of climate solutions. Congress must lead the way in ensuring that everyone has access to electric vehicles and clean air, including people who can’t afford to own a car.”

The bill would authorize up to $50 million in annual appropriations from 2022-2031 to launch a grant program with DoE which would implement the program in coordination with Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Department of Transportation (DOT). The program would provide up to $1 million in funding to eligible entities to support EV car sharing services dedicated for residents who live in public housing projects. Research has shown that public housing residents face significant barriers in accessing reliable and affordable transportation of any kind – and especially zero-emission transportation. Additionally, too many communities of color face disproportionate air pollution yet completely lack access to EV charging infrastructure or zero emission vehicles even though operating EVs is much less expensive than operating gasoline powered cars.

Barragán’s office worked closely with the
Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) to develop the legislation. LACI is accelerating transportation electrification in the Los Angeles region through pilots and policy, as well as incubating startups and training individuals to join the green workforce. Among other community shared EV mobility pilots, LACI launched EV car sharing programs in public housing developments in Los Angeles, including one dedicated only to housing authority residents at Rancho San Pedro, in partnership with the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles (HACLA).

“LACI’s mobility pilots have demonstrated that EV car sharing programs can improve the economic mobility and quality of life of residents whose communities face disproportionate air pollution and climate impacts,” said Matt Petersen, LACI’s president and CEO. “We applaud Congresswoman Barragán leadership in helping to scale this pilot to increase equitable access to transportation to shared EVs and charging in cities across the nation.”

“Going green shouldn’t be reserved for only a specific socioeconomic status,” said HACLA President and CEO Doug Guthrie. “This electric vehicle share initiative provides a benefit to the community and environment as a whole. The Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles is proud to partner with LACI on this forward-thinking and innovative pilot program that brings both opportunity and access to our residents in a community that is often overlooked and underserved,” Guthrie added.

The bill is aligned with the Biden-Harris administration’s
Justice40 Initiative, a commitment to invest 40% of the federal government’s investments in climate and clean energy in disadvantaged communities.

Barragn was joined by 23 original cosponsors of the EVs for All Act, including
Congressmembers: Adam Smith (Wash.), Yvette Clarke (N.Y.), Adriano Espaillat (N.Y.), Doris Matsui (Calif.), Andr  Carson (Ind.), Dina Titus (Nev.), Pramila Jayapal (Wash.), Ra l Grijalva (Ariz.), Sheila Jackson Lee (Texas), Donald M. Payne Jr. (N.J.), Ruben Gallego (Ariz.), Derek Kilmer (Wash.), Ted Lieu (Calif.), Marilyn Strickland (Wash.), Jimmy Gomez (Calif.), Mike Levin (Calif.), Chellie Pingree (Maine), Jim Costa (Calif.), Bonnie Watson Coleman (N.J.), Tim Ryan (Ohio), Jared Huffman (Calif.), Rick Larsen (Wash.), and Alan Lowenthal (Calif.).

A PDF of the bill is attached.

The EVs for All Act has significant support from environmental justice, clean tech, clean air, and environmental organizations. 

Groups in support:

EVs for All Supporters as of February 4, 2022

Acterra: Action for a Healthy Planet
AMPLY Power

Breathe California of the Bay Area, Golden Gate, and Central Coast

Breathe California Sacramento Region

Breathe Southern California

Center for Environmental Health

Center for Sustainable Energy

Citizens Climate Lobby – Long Beach/South Bay

Clean Fuels Michigan

Cleantech San Diego

The Climate Center

Climate + Energy Project (Kansas)

The Climate Reality Project: Chicago Metro Chapter

The Climate Reality Project: Los Angeles Chapter

The Climate Reality Project: San Fernando Valley Chapter

Climate Resolve

Coalition for a Safe Environment

Communities for a Better Environment

Corporate Ethics International

Councilmember Paul Koretz

Defend Our Future

East Bay Community Energy (EBCE)

Ecology Center (Michigan)

Edison International

Electrification Coalition

Elemental Excelerator

The Emphysema Foundation of America

Environmental Defense Fund

Environmental Entrepreneurs (E2)

Environment America

EV Connect

EVHybridNoire

Envoy Technologies

Evergreen Climate Innovations

Forth

Fresh Energy

Generation 180

Greater Washington Region Clean Cities Coalition

GreenLatinos

The Greenlining Institute

Greenlots

Grid Alternatives Greater Los Angeles

LABC

Launch Alaska

Local Government Commission

Los Angeles Community College District

Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI)

Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation (LAEDC)

New Jersey Clean Cities Coalition

NYU Urban Future Lab

Pacoima Beautiful

Paired Power, Inc.

Plug In America

Prairie Rivers Network

Project Green Home

Prospect Silicon Valley

ReJoule, Inc.

Respiratory Health Association

Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality District

San Fernando Valley Climate Reality

Shared-Use Mobility Center

Sierra Club

South Coast Air Quality Management District

South Los Angeles Transit Empowerment Zone (SLATE-Z)

Southern Alliance for Clean Energy

Southwest Energy Efficiency Project

Transportation Electrification Partnership

U.S. Green Building Council – Los Angeles (USGBC-LA)

Valley CAN (Clean Air Now)

Valley Vision

Verdical Group

Vertue Lab

Vote Solar

Watts Clean Air & Energy Committee

Statement from Transportation Electrification Partnership on Governor Newsom’s Proposed 2022-2023 Budget

LOS ANGELES, CA “On behalf of the Transportation Electrification Partnership (TEP), I applaud and thank Governor Newsom for including $6.1 billion for zero-emission vehicles and infrastructure investments in his budget proposal, with a focus on providing greater access to and benefits from the transition to zero-emission vehicles to low-income communities that are disproportionately burdened by pollution. These investments are critical to achieving TEP’s bold 2028 targets for the LA region, and statewide goals for 2035 and beyond. 

We are pleased to see proposed funding for zero-emission vehicle purchases by low-income consumers, expansion of charging infrastructure in low-income neighborhoods, zero-emission mobility community pilots, electric transit and school bus purchases, zero-emission heavy-duty trucks and infrastructure, port electrification, as well as funding for active transportation projects such as bicycle and pedestrian safety programs, among others.

As the budget process progresses, LACI and TEP look forward to working with the Newsom Administration and Legislature to support these proposed investments and to develop a pathway to increase the funding for accelerating the electrification of California’s goods movement sector. 

Thanks to Governor Newsom’s leadership, California will fund investments to purchase 1,000 zero emission trucks along with supporting infrastructure. However, in order to transition the tens of thousands of diesel trucks serving California’s ports, we encourage the Governor and Legislature to dedicate a total of $3.35 billion in the 2022 budget towards the state’s transition to zero-emission drayage trucks and charging infrastructure, including $100 million zero-emission early action pilot projects in key transportation freight corridors like the I-710 freeway.

We believe the time is now for the State of California to fully embrace its unique role in making bold “market maker” investments that will create good jobs, advance equity, and result in deep reductions in air and climate pollution. We look forward to working with the Administration and Legislature to further develop the state budget to achieve these goals.


Matt Petersen
President & CEO, Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator
Chair, Transportation Electrification Partnership

 

ABOUT TEP
The Transportation Electrification Partnership (TEP) is an unprecedented regional public-private collaboration to accelerate deep reductions in climate and air pollution by the time of the 2028 Olympic and Paralympic Games by pursuing bold targets, pilots, initiatives, and policies that are equity-driven, create quality jobs, and grow the economy.

Current members include:
Leadership Group: Mayor Garcetti, CARB, County of Los Angeles, LADWP, LA Metro, Southern California Edison, LACI

Advisory Group: Audi of America, BMW Group, Nissan North America, PCS Energy, BYD Motors, Normal Now sponsored by Electrify America, Greenlots, Itron, Proterra, AMPLY Power, Burbank Water & Power, Clean Power Alliance, Culver City, East Bay Community Energy, Glendale Water & Power, Inglewood, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local Union 11 / National Electrical Contractors Association Los Angeles County, Metrolink, Pasadena Water & Power, Santa Monica, Southern California Public Power Authority, Tesla, Waymo


ABOUT LACI
Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) is creating an inclusive green economy for the people of Los Angeles by: unlocking innovation by working with startups to accelerate the commercialization of clean technologies; transforming markets through partnerships with policymakers, innovators, and market leaders in transportation, energy and sustainable cities; and enhancing communities through workforce development, pilots, and other programs. Founded as an economic development initiative by the City of Los Angeles and Los Angeles Department of Water & Power (LADWP), LACI is recognized as one of the most innovative business incubators in the world by UBI. As of Q2, 2021, LACI has helped 281 portfolio companies raise $636 million in funding and create over 2,300 jobs in the Los Angeles region, with a projected 5-year economic impact on the Los Angeles region of more than $520 million. Learn more at laci.org

LACI CEO Comments On COP26 UN Climate Talks and Passage of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Package

LACI CEO COMMENTS ON COP26 UN CLIMATE TALKS, BIPARTISAN INFRASTRUCTURE PACKAGE, AND  INFRASTRUCTURE INVESTMENT AND JOBS ACT (IIJA)

Los Angeles, November 12, 2021 – Upon return from the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26), Transportation Electrification Partnership (TEP) Chair and Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) CEO Matt Petersen released the following statement in response to COP26 negotiations and President Biden’s  Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) to be signed Monday: 

“Having just returned from COP26, it is obvious that the outcomes in the negotiating rooms have not yet matched the urgency demanded by the climate crisis. However, there have been many important outcomes at COP 26 that are worth celebrating, including: the US-China pledge yesterday to commit to hold global temperatures increase to 1.5 degrees C, a joint pledge to end deforestation by 2030 and achieve carbon-free electricity in the US by 2035; the commitment by an alliance of dozens of nations, cities and states––including Los Angeles and California––and companies to phase out internal combustion engines; the $130 trillion Global Finance Pledge; and the Global Methane Pledge led by the US and the EU.

Certainly the energy on the streets of Glasgow was full of optimism—as I joined an estimated 25,000 young and old alike marching for bold climate action, I felt a rise of hope and a sense of urgency. Inside the official climate talks I spoke at the official US Pavilion and joined the Deputy Secretary of Energy Dave Turk and NREL officials to call for a $1 billion cleantech city innovation fund while pushing for commitments to transportation electrification to improve mobility for disadvantaged communities and reducing air and climate pollution. LACI’s commitment is represented by our unique model and creation of our $50 million in climate innovation funds.

Here in the US on Monday, the President will sign the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), which provides important funding including: $2.5B for zero-emission school buses, $1.5B for zero-emissions transit buses, $2.25B for port infrastructure—key for the LA region given 40% of the nation’s goods come through our two ports making goods movement the largest single source of air pollution in our region, $6.1B for battery manufacturing, and $7.5B for public EV charging. These investments, passed by Congress, represent an important down payment in our climate future with an infrastructure package that includes a portion of the $150 billion stimulus transportation electrification proposal that LACI and our 100 plus member coalition of automakers, business organizations and cleantech incubators from 18 states originally put forward in April 2020.  

Yet we can and must do more. We have an opportunity and an obligation to accelerate our transition to zero-emission cars, trucks, and buses, today––especially for low-income communities and communities of color who are disproportionately impacted by transportation pollution. On behalf of our coalition, I urge Congress to quickly adopt the Build it Back Better Act to ensure that our nation makes the additional investments needed to reduce emissions, create green jobs, and make the U.S. the leader in the move to equitable zero-emissions mobility, goods movement solutions, and public transit.”

As LACI identified in the December 2019 “Cleantech Cities” report, cities around the globe can create a $5 trillion market and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 35% by removing barriers to funding for startups. Based on the strategies identified in the report, LACI’s Transportation Electrification Partnership partnered with the City of Santa Monica to invite corporate and startup innovations to work together to create the US’ first Zero Emissions Delivery Zone pilot in Santa Monica. During COP26, Petersen called for a $1 billion cleantech cities pilot fund to support similar initiatives across the globe, alongside Actor Brian Cox, Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego, Caroline Choi of Southern California Edison, Spencer Reeder of Audi, and former California Air Resources Board Chair Mary Nichols. LACI’s announcement on the call to action can be found here.

LACI Announces First-of-Its-Kind Debt Fund

 

Revolving Debt Fund helps startups scale, with a focus on under-resourced founders

Pilot program results validate need for early-stage cleantech debt solutions

Second funder in fund, Union Bank, marks shift beyond pilot stage

 

LACI’s mission of creating an inclusive green economy offers cleantech founders access to the right capital to scale their startups, to help drive revenues, job creation and environmental impact. Over the past decade of incubation, LACI realized that debt needed to play a role in scaling cleantech startups much earlier than conventionally understood

Most early-stage startups rely almost exclusively on equity investment, primarily venture capital (VC). This reliance often leads to:

  • Founder dilution, with the median founder owning 15% of their company at exit. 
  • Risky and expensive alternatives. No early-stage startup can accurately forecast all expenses. As a result, many founders incur credit card debt when unexpected business opportunities arise, or they provide personal collateral for loans, a practice that prevents under-resourced but talented founders from scaling their ventures.
  • Lack of capital for founders of color. Over the course of five years, Crunchbase found that just 2.4% of total VC funding went to Black and Latino/Hispanic founders, even though Black and Latino/Hispanic populations account for roughly 31% of the overall population. LACI founders are even more diverse, with approximately 33% of incubation program founders coming from the Black and Latino/Hispanic community.

Finding a way to prudently and cost-effectively layer in debt earlier in the process would:

  • Allow funders more choice about when and how much equity to take on, and enable founders to reduce their ownership dilution.
  • Prevent founders from taking on risky alternatives, such as personal credit card debt.
  • Allow founders of color greater access to capital to grow their startups. Although debt funders such as banks need to improve their track record of lending to Black and Latino/Hispanic founders, they often fare better than their VC counterparts.

To address this problem, LACI was awarded a grant from the Department of Energy’s Capital Access Program in 2017 to research and structure a debt fund to support LACI’s early stage cleantech founders. This research was initially shared at the Clinton Foundation economic conference in November of 2019, with private-sector lenders and public-sector officials validating the model of creating a revolving debt fund focused on working capital and business expansion, with capital coming from philanthropic or program-related investment capital. LACI’s research revealed that private banks and other financial intermediaries clearly see the need and demand for such lending but struggled to find a path to cost effectively serve the market, other than connecting founders with traditional products, such as second mortgages and credit card debt.

In 2020, Wells Fargo invested the first loan capital into the LACI Debt Fund, an initial $110,000 contribution to pilot the concept of providing loans of $20k-$40k with interest rates at or below market for LACI companies who do not yet qualify for traditional loans. 

Today, LACI is pleased to announce that it has approved the 10th loan of the LACI Debt Fund. While the Debt Fund is modest in size, initial recipients of loans from the LACI Debt Fund have subsequently raised close to $100M in follow-on funding from both equity and debt sources, validating the crucial role that early-stage debt can play as part of a comprehensive incubation experience.

With the number of successful loans entering the double digits, LACI has opened the Debt Fund to other funders. Last week, Union Bank cemented its participation in the LACI Debt Fund, increasing the fund loan capital by almost 50% to $160k. The increased capital marks the end of the pilot phase and commencement of expanded operations, including regularly supporting more LACI founders with additional loans.

Prospective startups interested in learning about the Debt Fund as part of LACI’s overall incubation services are encouraged to reach out to pipeline@laci.org. Funders interested in supporting the LACI Debt Fund via philanthropic or program-related investment capital can contact development@laci.org.