📊 ClimateHack Vol. 54: Climate Funding Down 40%

PLUS: Australia's Sensand secure $6 million for carbon credit transparency

Hey There,

Last week CTVC put out a the latest numbers on climate venture funding in 2023.

  • The short: Climate tech funding is down 40%.

  • The data: $13B raised in H1’23, down 40% from H1’22.

  • The closeup: Overall deal count is up 8% thanks to a frothy seed funding environment (+23%), while overall round sizes are smaller (-44%) due to a decrease in growth funding (-64%).
    The big picture: While that sounds bad (and kind of is), overall venture funding is down 53% - so it can always be worse.

More worryingly are the conversations and whispers we’ve heard from VC’s who feel a noticeable slowdown in LP commitments - especially when it comes to first and second time funds - but trickling into the established funds too.

Our prediction is that unless growth activity picks up again (wether that’s from VC’s, corporates or banks), we see some big flashy climate exits, or companies start making profitable, fast growth - LP’s will continue to hold out, and there will be a boatload of Seed+ climate companies chasing very few mid-to-growth stage funding options.

The whole CTVC report is worth the read to draw your own conclusions - and here’s hoping our predictions are proven wrong.

In today's edition:

🐟 $6M raised for Sensand’s carbon credit transparency platform.
🏭 Climentum Capital’s latest investment into Sweden's Kärnfull Next.
🍗 GOOD Meat team up with chef José Andrés’ to serve up cultivated chicken.

Digest x Climate

Image Credit: Guardian graphic. Source: Noaa. OISST V2.1. Climate ranalyzer.org, Climate Change Institute, University of Maine:

📈 What’s up? The world recorded its hottest day ever this week, with its average temperature reaching 17.18 degrees Celsius on Tuesday 4th July, according to the University of Maine’s Climate Reanalyzer.

📉 What’s down? US-based startup Bolt Threads has stopped production of its mycelium-based leather alternative, Mylo, after failing to secure necessary funding to scale.

🟢 The US Federal Trade Commission has been urged to update its Green Guides to tackle “rampant greenwashing”, which currently don’t include specific definitions of the terms ‘carbon neutral,’ ‘carbon negative,’ ‘climate-positive,’ or ‘net zero’, despite frequently being cited in court cases.

📊 Interesting graphic: Check out the ‘staircase of denial’ by Mark Maslin, Professor at UCL.

Carbon x Climate

Image Credits: Sensand

💨 Australian startup Sensand secured $6 million for its carbon credit transparency platforms, Blockbase and Mintly. Blockbase is designed to enable farmers and landowners to measure and validate carbon sequestration and the impacts of their practices on natural capital. Mintly helps market participants to leverage this verification data to bring high-quality credits to global carbon markets.

🔎 Scientists at the University of Loughborough, UK, have developed a unique carbon footprint tool to allow businesses to measure the CO2 output of their digital data, so they can make data-driven decisions that benefit the environment and save money by reducing reliance on carbon offsetting schemes.

Food x Climate

Image Credits: Upside Foods

🍗 Upside Foods’ cultivated chicken has already been served to diners in the US. Renowned chef Dominique Crenn fried the chicken in a Recado Negro-infused tempura batter, accompanied by a burnt chili aioli, at her restaurant Bar Crenn in San Francisco.

🍴 And, just a few days later, Eat Just’s GOOD Meat cultivated chicken was served to diners in a Peruvian dish at chef José Andrés’ restaurant, China Chilcano, during a landmark dinner honouring the 100th birthday of the late Willem van Eelen, considered the godfather of cultivated meat.

🇳🇱 The Dutch government has worked with cultivated meat startups Mosa Meat and Meatable, and sector representative HollandBIO, to develop a ‘code of practice’ that would make cultivated food tastings possible in controlled environments, marking a major step for the Netherlands’ cellular agriculture sector.

🏭 Austrian startup Arkeon Biotechnologies has successfully set up a pilot production plant for its functional protein ingredients made from captured carbon dioxide.

🇬🇧 The UK government launched a £5 million funding competition for sustainable farming projects, focused on solutions that support environmental sustainability, progression towards net zero, and farming resilience.

🌾 US-based Aigen is building an autonomous weeding robot, the Aigen Element, which uses an advanced computer vision system when driving over farmland to identify crops and flick weeds out of the way, helping to reduce the use of agricultural pesticides.

🛒 Swiss online farmers’ market Farmy secured €10.7 million from new and existing investors to support its growth plans towards break-even, planned for 2025.

Energy x Climate

Image Credits: GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy

🏭 Kärnfull Next, based in Sweden, secured investment from Climentum Capital. It claims to be the first supplier to offer nuclear-only electricity contracts to households and SMEs.

⚡️ London-based Renewabl raised £1.1 million pre-seed funding, in a round led by South Pole, QVentures, and Portfolion, to further develop its hourly-matched renewable energy certificate platform as it prepares for European rollout.

🛒 A new energy efficient supermarket has launched in Denmark. Industrial machinery manufacturer Danfoss has opened 1he 1,500 square metre ‘Smart Store’, which features a range of innovative refrigeration and heat capture and reuse technology to help save on operating costs, limit food waste, and improve food safety.

Materials x Climate

Image Credits: -

🇨🇳 Scientists from the Chinese University of Hong Kong have developed an edible, transparent, and biodegradable material from soy protein isolate, by working with bacterial cellulose. They say the packaging has the potential to replace plastic wrappers in food packaging.

🇬🇧 The UK’s national innovation agency, Innovate UK, is investing £13 million into 270 startups and spinouts, including CSBR Ltd, which is creating oil out of waste cashew shells, and Entoplast, which is developing a replacement for plastic or bioplastic produced from the insects in organic waste.

Transport x Climate

Image Credits: EVOS

🚗 Australian startup EVOS, focused on fleet energy management and AC charging for electric vehicles, raised $5 million Series A funding to launch a new home charger and support further development of other products in its pipeline.

🔌 Kentucky is the first US state to mandate that electric vehicle charging companies include Tesla’s charging plug if they want to secure federal funds from a state program to electrify highways, with Texas and Washington likely to follow suit.

Funds x Climate

Image Credits: Public Ventures

🇺🇸 US-based Public Ventures is launching a $100 million fund to support early stage startups working within life science and climate tech, that are focused on “improving health equity and supporting climate preparedness for underserved communities.”

🌎 Brinc has launched a new, three-month program for climate tech startups focused on carbon dioxide removal. Its inaugural cohort of four startups includes UK-based Airhive, which is creating geochemical direct air capture to scale carbon removal, and Poás Bioenergy, based in Costa Rica, which turns agricultural waste into biochar and syngas.

💡 Good Read: Rokas Peciulaitis, founder and Managing Partner at Contrarian Ventures, shared some interesting takeaways from Climate50’s 2022 report.

Community x Climate

🌎 We’re looking for exceptional individuals to join our first cohort of ClimateHack Ambassadors.

Apply here if you’re;

  • Passionate about building up your local ClimateTech community.

  • Want direct access to some of the top Founders & Funders in Climate.

  • Keen to host 4 Meetups per year (with our support and guidance).

Or forward this email to someone in your network who you think would make a great fit.

Memes x Climate

Thanks for reading and sorry for the Debbie Downer intro today.

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Editorial by Arman, Curation by Nicola.