Category: N-LACI-Events

LACI Events

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.

LA Cleantech Incubator (LACI) calls for $1B global cleantech city pilot fund & announces LACI’s $50M US climate innovation funds to accelerate equitable climate action at COP26

Helping Cities Invite Innovation Through Global Pilot Fund & Creating Regional Collaboration Such as the Transportation Electrification Partnership Can Help Unlock $5T & Slash GHG Emissions by 35%; LACI Funds Include First in U.S. National Cleantech Debt Fund to Improve Access to Capital Particularly for Underrepresented BIPOC and Female Founders

During a panel session on Accelerating Equitable Climate Innovation and Action today, Brian Cox joined host and LACI CEO & President Matt Petersen, Phoenix, AZ Mayor Kate Gallego, Edison International SVP Caroline Choi, Audi of America Director of Government Affairs & Sustainability Spencer Reeder, and former California Air Resources Board Chair Mary Nichols to call for a $1 billion Global Cleantech Cities Climate Fund and announce LACI’s $50 million cleantech innovation funds–including the nation’s first ever cleantech startup debt fund–to accelerate equitable cleantech innovation in cities.

As identified in the December 2019 “Cleantech Cities” report released by LACI, PwC, and C40 at COP25 in Madrid, if cities can better invite innovation and remove barriers to funding for startups there could be a $5 trillion market created and and an increase in reduction of GHGs by 35% can be realized. 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.

In issuing the call to create a $1B Global Cleantech City Pilot Fund and urging the modeling of regional public private collaborations such as the Transportation Electrification Partnership, Petersen discussed how cities & regions across the globe can: 

  1. Invite innovation from startups and corporates to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improve services, and improve equity for underserved, disadvantaged communities who are overburdened with air pollution and climate impacts; 
  2. Co-fund pilot innovation (using budget and in-kind resources from cities and local governments) with Pilot Fund sources secured from federal governments, finance agencies, philanthropic sources, and possibly corporate dollars; and
  3. Scale successful solutions through needed policy and business model interventions

Please contact Regan Keller at laci@antennagroup.com to schedule an interview with Petersen.

Apply for LACI Startup Incubation Program Cohort 4

Apply Now for LACI Startup Incubation Program Cohort 4

Are you a cleantech startup striving to create solutions in energy, transportation, or smart cities that would benefit from hands-on support through market access, business services, and introductions to funders?

LACI has welcomed 35 startups into our ecosystem through our last three cohorts. Cohort 1 and cohort 2 founders have raised over $62 million in equity, including investment from LACI’s Impact Fund, and have deployed more than 10 pilots with eleven more on the way. Cohort 3 is just getting started! LACI is eager to welcome even more startups to the community and is now taking applications for Cohort 4 until January 3rd.

How does LACI identify leading technologies and startup innovation?
Based on the market activity in 2020/2021, LACI is looking for startups solving problems in Clean Energy, Zero Emissions Mobility, and Sustainable Cities

LACI is committed to advancing the transition of a zero-carbon, secure, and reliable grid to increase regional air quality, create more local jobs, and reduce emissions. The past year revealed community-wide vulnerabilities that have created opportunities in cybersecurity and wildfire resilience, flexible load technologies in collaboration with utilities, and integration of vehicle-to-grid and vehicle-to-building technologies to shorten the time when EVs use the grid. 

To build an inclusive green economy, LACI is also looking to support startup-led innovation focused on zero emissions mobility of people and goods. LACI’s Transportation Electrification Partnership (TEP) for example, works together with policymakers, corporate partners, and other private-public collaboration to help achieve the following goals in Los Angeles by the 2028 Olympic and Paralympic Games: 

  • Accelerate the adoption of electric light duty vehicles to be 30% of all vehicles on the road and 80% of those sold
  • Shift at least 20% of all single passenger vehicle trips to zero emissions public and active transportation
  • Ensure that 100% of all public investments in goods movement will advance zero emissions solutions

Using this roadmap, LACI wants to work with companies that can help utilize innovative technologies and solutions to make the movement of people and goods connected, shared, and electric. Some examples of these solutions include: Real-time data reliability and multi-modality, low-cost, high visibility mobility hubs for first/last mile mobility, zero emissions last mile urban goods delivery, and more.

LA’s New Green Deal of zero waste to landfill by 2050 is another example of the regional initiatives LACI supports through our startup leadership in our Sustainable Cities Program. Some solutions we’re focused on include digital tools and new business models to create equitable and circular value chains, next generation products and materials to reduce waste, zero waste goals and waste diversion. 

Apply now, scale later
LACI’s Incubation Program startups pave the way for climate innovation in Southern California. Companies like ChargerHelp! are training the next generation of tech engineers through LACI’s Workforce Development Program to move the needle forward on EV adoption, gaining interest from investors to close an oversubscribed seed round

We’re only 4 weeks in and Cohort 3 startups are forging relationships with their fellow cohort members, setting roadmaps with their Executive Coaches, and gaining insights on their roadmaps and milestones! 

Beyond the investment team, LACI’s Incubation Program Cohort model provides a community with hands-on curriculum, impact driven resources, industry connections and partnership pipeline, as well as direct feedback from individual Executive in Residence coaches and expert mentors. 

For Cohort 4, we’re looking for startups in our main technology priorities that are dedicated to making a positive impact on Southern California environmentally, socially, and economically. 

Founders who have built a novel technology that has deployed or is ready to be deployed in pilots should apply. Teams should include two or more members dedicated to incorporating diversity and inclusion through impact and creation of new jobs in the region.

Apply now and join LACI to scale faster and increase your impact in your community. If you’re unsure about your eligibility or have questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our Pipeline Team at pipeline@laincubator.org.

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.

Addressing Cleantech Gaps & Opportunities in Los Angeles

Last month, LACI shared findings and insights from its Cleantech Gaps & Opportunities Report with 37 investor partners interested in learning about LACI’s technology priorities and its portfolio companies with clean technology solutions. The Gaps & Opportunities Report builds off of LACI’s Market Landscape Report by further examining barriers associated with its technology priorities and identifying strategic opportunities to transform markets and support the commercialization of clean technologies.

The nature and landscape of cleantech and early-stage startup companies is constantly evolving. As new investment strategies are implemented, market needs change and new environmental challenges emerge, industry leaders in the energy innovation ecosystem often rely on market reports and insights from the world’s leading analyst companies. These insights paint a broad illustration of the global or national market; however, they do not always provide in-depth detail about early stage cleantech investment opportunities at the local level.

 To address the need for insights at the local level and to better assess how to accelerate early stage cleantech companies and transform markets to catalyze commercial adoption, LACI started producing its own market research reports in 2019. These reports leverage market insights related to its recruitment efforts for early stage cleantech companies. 

During this year’s briefing, LACI held three simultaneous briefing sessions on energy, transportation, and the circular economy industry solutions allowing investors to attend sessions based on their investment vertical interest. In those sessions, LACI’s Market Transformation Directors presented on the industry specific key findings from each report, the emerging technology opportunity areas, and barriers for market adoption. 

Energy
As California prepares for summer and its fire season, energy resilience and the health of the grid’s infrastructure is on everyone’s minds. To prevent the blackouts and grid strain witnessed in 2020, State energy regulators have acquired approximately an additional 3,500 megawatts of capacity. As a part of LACI’s work to support the state’s energy goals in the transition to a reliable, zero-carbon grid, LACI continues to prioritize startup companies that provide technological solutions to manage load flexibility and provide diverse battery storage systems.Companies like ElectricFish (Incubation Cohort 2) are working to integrate distributed energy resources (DERs) with EV chargers to provide clean, robust sources of power to communities. Their technology helps further validate vehicle grid integration technology as well as support opportunities to leverage similar technologies for seamless demand response dispatch with an offering that reduces grid connection costs and peak power requirements at charging sites.

Building decarbonization will play a critical role in helping the city of Los Angeles meet its 100% zero-carbon grid by 2035 and Clean and Healthy Buildings Targets: 100% of buildings becoming net zero carbon by 2050 and reducing building energy use by 44% per sq ft. by 2050. In support of this effort, LACI is working to identify companies with technology solutions that can catalyze necessary building upgrades and retrofits to achieve the net zero carbon goals. 

Transportation
With California and the Biden administration making significant commitments to zero emissions transportation in line with the bold targets the LACI-convened Transportation Electrification Partnership’s (TEP) has set for the Los Angeles region, LACI highlighted a number of relevant opportunity areas, including charging infrastructure for multi-unit dwellings and infrastructure for heavy-duty battery-electric trucks.

One LACI startup, SparkCharge (Incubation Cohort 1), is advancing the adoption of electric vehicles in Southern California with its innovative EV charging technology. SparkCharge is a scalable EV charging solution that ends range anxiety by providing charging infrastructure solutions at a fraction of the cost and rapid deployment to consumers. Its Roadie is the world’s first and only ultrafast, portable EV charging system helping EV owners charge up wherever they need. SparkCharge is helping to provide temporary solutions to multi-unit dwellers in urban areas without onsite charging capabilities.

 

LACI startup and TEP partner, AMPLY Power is addressing electric heavy-dutytruck and bus infrastructure by managing charging services for electric vehicle fleets, optimizing time-of-use and demand-charge pricing. AMPLY technology supports opportunities for improving microgrid management for electric fleet charging and better assisting fleet managers in balancing local power demands.Additionally, LACI has conducted site assessments of nearly a dozen properties along the heavily trafficked I-710 corridor to identify prime investment opportunities for charging infrastructure to support heavy-duty battery-electric drayage trucks serving the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.

 

Sustainable Cities
The global textile industry misses out on $500B per year due to underutilized materials, poor recycling practice and nonexistent circular infrastructure generating tons of post industrial pre-consumer textile waste. To reduce its waste generation, the city of Los Angeles has set ambitious goals to send zero waste to landfill by 2050. LACI’s Sustainable Cities work, with a focus on circular economy, supports this regional initiative by recruiting diverse startups with technologies that advance material diversion and  generate new materials or products using circular practice. LACI Startup The Hurd Co. (Innovators Cohort 5) works to reduce agricultural waste by turning it into fabric. The technology integrates into existing manufacturing supply chains and provides proof of concept for the scalability of circular and next generation materials in traditional markets.

Insights like these and many more found in the reports inform LACI’s partners of the local cleantech market landscape, the barriers and solutions needed to transition to a clean energy future and highlight LACI’s recruitment priorities. 

 

Incubation Cohort 3 & Innovators Cohort 6 Recruitment
LACI is currently seeking startup companies with clean technology solutions for both its Innovators and Incubation Programs. Technology priorities for both programs include Zero Emissions Mobility, Clean Energy, and Sustainable Cities/Circular Economy. We are also actively recruiting for mobility companies in our late stage (Series A and beyond) pilots-focused program. For more information about LACI Incubation Services and which program you should apply for contact pipeline@laci.org. Incubation applications close June 28th, Market Access applications close June 30th, and Innovators Applications close July 6th, so apply today!

To learn more about how you can partner with LACI contact development@laci.org.

 

LACI Market Access Cohort 3 Recruitment is Live

Over the past nine years LACI has worked with hundreds of startup companies to help them raise outside funding and gain traction in the market – empowering startups to increase their social, economic and environmental impact in their community. 

One year ago, we launched our Market Access program – a holistic, pilots-focused program for later-stage startups deploying leading cleantech solutions in Southern California. Today, we are excited to open recruitment for our Market Access Cohort 3, launching autumn 2021.

Our Market Access program includes Envoy, Urb-E, Circuit, Automotus and Zoomo, who are partnering with us in deployments covering EV car share for low-income communities in San Pedro and Pacoima, neighborhood EV shuttles in Leimert Park, and helping us launch the nation’s first zero emissions delivery zone in Santa Monica.

To date, Market Access companies have raised an average of $16M across investors such as Maniv Mobility, Baron Davis, UBS, Building Ventures, Denso, Contrarian Ventures, and more for their Series A and B raises. 

LACI’s pilots have a proven track record in creating transformative outcomes, demonstrating (for example) the importance of curb management in shifting mobility patterns or the potential for mobility-as-an-amenity to drive community adoption of EVs. Results of LACI pilots reach far beyond the Los Angeles region, as national and global organizations look to LACI for scalable cleantech solutions. 

Cohort 3 represents a unique opportunity for a funded deployment in partnership with LACI alongside pilot partners including LA DOT and LA Metro, in collaboration with underserved, overburdened communities in the Los Angeles area in 2021 and 2022.  In particular, we are aiming to deploy leading edge micro-mobility solutions (two-, three- and four-wheeled zero emissions vehicles and solutions) across the following categories: 

  • Micromobility – small, lightweight vehicles operating at speeds typically below 25 km/h and driven by users personally, including providers of e-bike adaptive micromobility, adaptive scooters, three- and four-wheeled devices for adaptive mobility, and more.
  • e-bikes – providers of e-bike fleets and can include one, some or all of the following: commuter, cargo, youth, adaptive micromobility or transportation solutions for all people, especially those with disabilities, and more. 
  • e-bike rental operations & maintenance – operators of e-bike hubs and libraries to provide management and maintenance of bike fleets; e-bike maintenance trainers also sought.
  • e-bike infrastructure – solutions that provide supportive infrastructure for e-bikes; features sought include storage, security, charging capacity (on or off-grid), marketing, education, etc. Solutions can provide all, one or some of these options. 

For more details, please reach out to Molly Crete (molly@laci.org) and attend the information session on June 16, 10:00-11:00am. RSVP here

Apply here. Applications for Market Access Cohort 3 are due June 30, 2021.

U.S. Department of Energy awards $9.5 Million to Support Clean Energy Innovation and Commercialization across America

Energy Program for Innovation Clusters Strengthens Innovation Ecosystem Development in Ten Regions Around the United States

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) today awarded Energy Program for Innovation Clusters (EPIC) funding to ten incubators and accelerators that will harness regional ingenuity and resources, develop pipelines for energy technology to reach the market, and stimulate the formation of new businesses to reach the Biden-Harris Administration’s goal of a net-zero carbon economy by 2050.

“The clean energy market is growing at a breakneck pace, and America’s innovators need the tools to keep up on a competitive global stage,” said Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm. “This funding fills a critical need for targeted financial support to incubators and accelerators that provide opportunity for aspiring energy entrepreneurs looking to fight climate change, create jobs, and empower underserved communities.”

This funding announcement is the second of a two-part program created by DOE’s Office of Technology Transitions (OTT)—in collaboration with DOE’s Building Technologies Office, the Arctic Energy Office, and the Office of Electricity—to support robust energy innovation ecosystems and stimulate energy hardware development in regions across the United States. Previously, DOE awarded $1 million to 20 incubators and accelerators across the nation.

“I was proud to support the Midwest Regional Innovation Partnership and its partners’ request for this Department of Energy grant, which has the potential to grow the innovation ecosystem in the Midwest,” said U.S. Senator Dick Durbin. “This federal funding will increase the rate of technology commercialization in the region and help companies create more high-tech domestic jobs.”

“I’m thrilled to see the Department of Energy announce $9.5 million to support clean energy innovation and commercialization. This funding will bring together researchers, innovators, investors, and adopters from across the energy innovation ecosystem to act as a catalyst for the development, commercialization, and transfer of energy technologies. I fully support strengthening the portfolio of technologies we are researching, enhancing their commercialization, and pursuing every opportunity to advance the United States’ competitive advantages, and I will continue to push for investments in these much-needed technologies of the future,” said U.S. Senator Joe Manchin, Chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.

“Los Angeles has long been known as America’s innovation hub and an emerging leader in technology and clean energy. Today’s announcement is both welcome news for the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator and the City of Los Angeles as this $1 million award from the U.S. Department of Energy will help encourage the growth of new clean-tech jobs in California’s 34th Congressional District and beyond,” said U.S. Representative Jimmy Gomez. [Read the full press release.]

Today’s funding awards allocate approximately $9.5 million across ten organizations:

  • Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) (Los Angeles, CA) – Leveraging a Southern California Energy Innovation Cluster to Pilot & Validate Emerging Energy Technologies (Award Amount: $1,000,000). LACI aims to scale the impact of its incubation program and accelerate the momentum of early-stage companies toward investment and customer-paid commercial deployments of their emerging clean energy technologies through startup pilots designed with input from stakeholders across the clean energy ecosystem within the Los Angeles County/greater Southern California region.
  • New Energy Nexus (New York City, NY) – The Clean Fight: Bringing NY’s Best (Award Amount: $992,970). New Energy Nexus NY’s project will create a statewide energy storage hardware innovation cluster to accelerate New York’s energy storage manufacturing industry, positioning it as a U.S. hub for energy storage innovation, research, development, and manufacturing.
  • Clean Energy Trust (Chicago, IL) – Midwest Regional Innovation Partnership (MRIP) (Award Amount: $909,411). MRIP will enable Midwest energy hardware and related technology startups to scale, attract capital, create jobs, and drive economic development in the Midwest. MRIP will launch three new accelerator programs, which will benefit from MRIP partners’ collective expertise, resources, and reach.
  • Regents of New Mexico State University (Las Cruces, NM) – New Mexico Clean Energy Resilience and Growth (NM CERG) Cluster (Award Amount: $1,000,000). NM CERG will work with regional stakeholders to pivot current and create new programming for an idea-to-business pipeline for startups commercializing clean energy technologies.
  • Syracuse University (Syracuse, NY) – Energy Program Innovation Cluster for Equity and Health in Grid-interactive Efficient Buildings (EPIC GEB) (Award Amount: $750,000). Syracuse’s project will fertilize the regional ecosystem of companies making energy hardware and related products required to achieve next-generation Grid-interactive Efficient Buildings. The project will emphasize products for the building sector of the economy, which takes advantage of the region’s long history of successful businesses in this sector. Following DOE’s Equity in Energy Initiative, ventures and companies will learn about the positive outcomes that can be achieved through development, design, and construction of hardware through an equity lens.
  • United States Research Impact Alliance (USRIA) (Morgantown, WV) – IMPACT Accelerator (Award Amount: $1,000,000). USRIA’s IMPACT Accelerator will identify and mature federally funded technologies that have the potential to solve a targeted set of challenges for the energy and manufacturing industries. The IMPACT acceleration process operates with a “market-pull” orientation and more deeply engages with industry stakeholders on the targeted issues.
  • Launch Alaska (Anchorage, AK) – Launch Alaska Transportation and Energy Accelerator (LATEA) (Award Amount: $882,999). Launch Alaska will stimulate energy and related hardware technology development and rapidly expand the growing cluster of innovative companies developing and deploying energy solutions in Alaska. The project will enhance Launch Alaska’s resilience and operational sustainability, leading to greater development of transportation and energy-related hardware technologies in Alaska.
  • Colorado State University (Fort Collins, CO) – Colorado Energy Innovation Collaborative (CEIC) (Award Amount: $1,000,000). Colorado State University’s project will create an energy hardtech accelerator that will support two cohorts of up to 20 founders. The proposed Rockies/Plains Energy Accelerator for Commercializing Hardtech (REACH) is tailored to the specific needs of the Rocky Mountains Great Plains region – an area spanning over 40% of the Lower Continental United States that produces 25% of the nation’s energy.
  • E4 Carolinas, Inc. (Charlotte, NC) – Regional Energy Hardware Innovation Accelerator (Award Amount: $999,704). E4 Carolina’s project will identify and define the region’s energy hardware clusters and engage cluster members to support the accelerator in selectively identifying U.S. hardware-focused ventures each year, connecting ventures with advisors and resources, and building regional capacity for innovation though proof-of-concept demonstrations with prospective customers.
  • VertueLab (Portland, OR) – Northwest Cleantech Innovation Network (NWCIN) (Award Amount: $999,613). VertueLab’s project will add new programs to specifically address the challenges facing new energy hardware technology start-ups. NWCIN will establish a regional entrepreneurial support system and network of resources for integrated outreach, education, and company screening, and will provide support to Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Alaska entrepreneurs and cleantech startups through four assistance programs.

Established in 2015, OTT advances the economic, energy, and national security interests of the United States by expanding the commercial impact of DOE’s research and development portfolio. OTT spearheads programs that support commercialization and fosters DOE’s strong internal and external partnerships that guide innovations from the lab to the marketplace.

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CA State Budget Support for Zero-Emission Vehicles and Infrastructure

The Honorable Gavin Newsom, Governor
State of California
State Capitol, Suite 1173
Sacramento, CA 95814

The Honorable Toni Atkins, President Pro Tempore
California State Senate
State Capitol, Room 205
Sacramento, CA 95814

The Honorable Anthony Rendon, Speaker
California State Assembly
State Capitol, Room 219
Sacramento, CA 95814

The Honorable Nancy Skinner, Chair
Senate Budget Committee
State Capitol, Room 5019
Sacramento, CA 95814

The Honorable Phil Ting, Chair
Assembly Budget Committee
State Capitol, Room 6026
Sacramento, CA 95814

Re: State Budget Support for Zero-Emission Vehicles and Infrastructure

Dear Governor Newsom, President Pro Tempore Atkins, Speaker Rendon, Chair Skinner, and Chair Ting:

We applaud the emphasis that each of your offices has placed on taking concrete steps and making bold investments to address dirty air and climate change. The need for state investment to accelerate zero-emission (ZE) vehicle adoption has never been more urgent, nor has the state ever had the means, as it does today, to enact change. The state surplus presents a once in a lifetime opportunity to lay the strong foundation for an accelerated and equitable transition to a zero-emission freight transportation system.

The entities listed below represent a broad coalition of stakeholders that firmly believe a major investment in zero-emission goods movement vehicles and supporting infrastructure must be made in the 2021-22 budget. We urge you to dedicate an additional $2.25 Billion towards the state’s transition to zero- emissions for drayage trucks and cargo handling equipment. This aligns with Executive Order N-79-20, our urgent need for clean air, the Transportation Electrification Partnership’s target for 40% ZE drayage trucks by 2028, and our ambitious yet achievable shared goals of achieving 100% ZE cargo handling equipment and drayage trucks. State investment, coupled with supporting regulation and policies can ensure establishment of a strong market for ZE freight vehicles. Investments are needed in vehicles, supporting infrastructure, workforce training to operate and maintain zero-emission equipment and infrastructure, and a means to offset the insurance costs for these new vehicles. Specifically, we are asking for the 2021-22

California budget to include:

  • $1 Billion for the California Air Resources Board’s Hybrid and Zero-Emission Truck and Bus Voucher Incentive Project (HVIP), Zero and Near Zero-Emission Freight Facilities (ZANZEFF), and Clean Off-Road Equipment (CORE) programs to fund human operated zero-emission drayage and cargo handling equipment;
  • $1 Billion for the California Energy Commission to fund charging infrastructure that supports EO N-79-20 implementation at California’s container ports;
  • $100 Million for expanding the availability and affordability of zero-emission drayage truck insurance for truck owners/drivers; and
  • $150 Million for workforce training to maintain and operate zero-emission goods movement vehicles and supporting equipment.

In addition to investment in equipment and infrastructure, we believe complementary investment to ensure that the jobs associated with our transition are captured here in California, especially in underserved and frontline communities. Creation of green jobs must be supported by this level of investment; so too should the transition of incumbent workers into the new, greener goods movement system. The existing supply chain workforce is comprised of millions of middle-class Californians. The state must play a stronger role in funding the transition to zero emission heavy duty trucks and equipment and building the supporting infrastructure to build strong local economies while fighting climate change and cutting air pollution.

We share your goals of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, improving air quality and public health, and transitioning to zero-emission vehicles and cargo handling equipment. Our commitment to this goal is evident in our collective global leadership to innovate and implement cutting-edge emission reduction practices. To continue this trajectory, it is imperative that the state’s policy leadership be accompanied by major fiscal investments to achieve these goals. We look forward to continuing to work with your offices and stakeholders on additional policy issues accompanying fleet transition; however, we believe the time is now for the State of California to embrace its unique role in making bold “market maker” investments. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to make the essential steps towards stemming climate change with new, clean technologies.

 

Thank you for your consideration,
A3PCON (Asian Pacific Planning and Policy Council) Environmental Justice Committee
Bay Area Council
BYD
California Association of Port Authorities (CAPA)
California Business Alliance for a Clean Economy
Communities for a Better Environment
EarthJustice
East Bay Community Energy
East Yard Communities for Environmental Justice
Environmental Defense Fund (EDF)
Harbor Trucking Association
International Longshore and Warehouse Union – Locals 13, 63 and 94
Long Beach Alliance for Children with Asthma (LBACA)
Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia
Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce
Los Angeles County Supervisor Janice Hahn
Los Angeles County Truck and Bus Coalition
Los Angeles IBEW/NECA Labor Management Cooperation Committee (or LMCC)
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti
Los Angeles City Councilmember Joe Buscaino
Los Angeles Clean Tech Incubator (LACI)
Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP)
PCS Energy
People’s Collective for Environmental Justice
Port of Hueneme
Port of Oakland
Port of Long Beach
Port of Los Angeles
Port of Richmond
Port of San Francisco
San Pedro and Peninsula Homeowners Coalition
Sierra Club
Southern California Edison
Union of Concerned Scientists
Urban Movement Labs
Warehouse Worker Resource Center
XOS Trucks

View The Official Letter Here: