⛏ ClimateHack Vol. 58: $28M for deep-tech mining

PLUS: A list of the the busiest sustainability investors in 2023.

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In today's edition:

⛏ Australian deep-tech mining company Plotlogic raise $28M Series B.
🏭 Temasek’s GenZero leads $125M for US-based Newlight Technologies.
🇺🇸 America’s first new nuclear reactor in nearly 7 years has begun operations.

Digest x Climate

Image Credit: Vogtle

📈 What’s up? America’s first new nuclear reactor in nearly seven years has begun operations, and will power an estimated 500,000 homes and businesses with clean energy.

📉 What’s down? The Biden Administration has actioned a ban on incandescent light bulbs, following a decade-long legislative path.

🇬🇧 British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak confirmed that the UK government will grant “hundreds” of new North Sea oil and gas licences to “boost British energy independence and grow the economy”.

🔮 Deloitte is predicting that retail consumers will soon encounter carbon offset options in many of their purchasing decisions, from buying coffee to buying a house, as consumer purchases of carbon offsets grows to become a $115 billion market by 2030.

Carbon x Climate

Image Credits: Newlight Technologies

🏭 US-based Newlight Technologies raised $125M in a round led by GenZero (Temasek-owned VC), the company uses ocean-based microogranisims to turn CO2 in air into a biomaterial (PHB). PHB can then be turned into products that stand-in for plastic, fibers, or leathers.

🌳 UK-based Revalue Nature raised $10 million Series A funding to support carbon offset project development. Its suite of tools, including a landscape scanner and map system, are designed to improve operational efficiency within carbon offset projects.

👀 Interesting: Crunchbase pulled together a list of 15 startups working at the intersection of AI and carbon removal, two of the hottest industries of the moment, all of which have raised more than $10 million.

💡 Great read: about the energy fundamentals of carbon removal by Ben James. Tldr; Direct Air Capture (DAC) uses a lot of energy.

Food x Climate

Image Credits: Goterra

🪰 Australian food waste startup Goterra, which uses black soldier fly maggots to eat through food waste, raised $10 million in a bridging round to ramp up treatment plants in western Sydney to tackle leftover produce from Woolworths that would otherwise go to landfill.

🛒 German supermarket PENNY launched a “true cost” trial, increasing the price of nine of its products to reflect the real climate and health impact of consuming certain foods. For example, its Mühlenhof wiener sausages are going up from €3.19 to €6.01.

🇪🇺 The UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization received €25 million from the European Union to extend and scale up its Sustainable Wildlife Management programme, designed to protect ecosystems and improve food nutrition in Africa.

🌾 The newest Purdue University/CME Group Ag Economy Barometer report shows that just 5.1% of all US farming acreage utilises cover crops, an important practice for regenerative agriculture.

Materials x Climate

Image Credits: Notpla

🤝 London-based packaging startup Notpla has partnered with home care and detergent maker MACK to create a sustainable clothes detergent sachet made with Notpla’s plant-based, water-soluble film made from seaweed.

🧪 A team of researchers from Virginia Tech has developed a new thermochemical approach for recycling polystyrene, which makes it possible to recover valuable chemicals from polystyrene waste in a simple two-step process.

📊 Cool Infographic: The US Department of Energy has released its 2023 critical minerals assessment, which ranks lithium as most important for the next ten years.

Energy x Climate

Image Credits: Sundown Pastoral

⚡️ New Zealand-based green hydrogen company Hiringa Energy and Australian agricultural and pastoral enterprise Sundown Pastoral Co have been awarded AUD$35.8 million from the New South Wales government to support a ‘green hydrogen’ and ammonia facility at one of Sundown’s cotton farms.

🇨🇦 The Government of Alberta, Canada is providing $50 million through its Alberta Innovates and Emissions Reduction Alberta programme to support development of technologies that are critical to advancing its Hydrogen Roadmap and Natural Gas Strategy, including hydrogen production, storage, transmission, and end-use in heavy-duty transportation, plus industrial heat, power, and chemicals, and commercial and residential heating.

👨‍⚖️ The US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which regulates the transmission and wholesale sale of electricity, has voted to approve a new rule that aims to streamline and speed up the interconnection process, and could help to unclog the bottleneck of getting clean power on the grid.

Transport x Climate

Image Credits: Dynamon

🚚 British software company Dynamon secured €4.6 million Series A funding to optimise the last mile of the EV transport industry with its software and analysis tools, which are designed to save energy and capital investment costs.

🏭 The Tees Valley Hydrogen Transport Hub, based in the UK, has received a further £8 million from the UK government to invest in hydrogen technology companies and skills. Its investments include ULEMCo, whose airport support vehicles are powered by hydrogen energy and used at Teesside airport.

Construction x Climate

Image Credits: Plotlogic

⛏ Australian deep-tech mining company Plotlogic raised $28 million Series B funding, in a round co-led by Galvanize Climate Solutions and SE Ventures, to expand its OreSense® technology into North America. The tech combines a sensor stack with AI to generate highly accurate ore characterisation predictions, helping miners to increase extraction of critical minerals and metals.

🏡 Berlin-based ecoworks secured €22 million Series A funding to automate the design process for retrofitting housing stock with its solutions for reducing CO2 emissions in the building sector, including a “highly efficient” building skin, modern TGA solutions, and the building's own supply of clean electricity.

Funds x Climate

Image Credits: A/O

🌎 European VC A/O Just reached the first close of its €250 million fund, with which it will support technologies that “enable the positive transformation of the built world”. Its first investment, in German home energy assessment startup Enter, has already been announced.

💰 US-based Prime Movers Lab raised $245 million for its third early-stage fund, with which it will support companies working to address “the world’s biggest problems” across sectors such as energy, transportation, infrastructure, manufacturing, and agriculture.

🌊 British investment firm Ocean 14 Capital secured €30 million for its fund aiming to improve the condition of the seas. It plans to add 20-25 companies to its portfolio over the next three years, and its investments so far include Brazilian sustainable tilapia farming startup Tilabras and Norwegian seafood harvesting equipment maker Ava Ocean.

💸 Fifty Years and EQT are launching Manifest Climate, a fast grants program which awards scientists $25,000-$100,000 to support their bio x climate solutions. Interested? Apply here.

👀 Good Read: Crunchbase listed out the busiest sustainability investors, with Lowercarbon Capital topping the charts.

Hack SPV’s take out the admin behind Equity and Debt fundraises.

Over the last year, 50+ Funds, Founders and Syndicates in climate tech have used Hack to simplify the pooling, cap table management and closing of their capital raises.

With no limitation on the number or the geography of investors and a fully digitised and compliant onboarding process, Hack offer the fastest way to get your SPV up and ready in hours, not weeks.

If you’re planning to pool capital for your next round, your first fund, or your first facility - apply here to see which solution works best for you.

Memes x Climate

🚌 At least they setup a carbon capture project too, amirite? Credit: Edward van der Hout

Thanks for reading and just an FYI, if you ever come across a cool tweet, piece of news or insider gossip that we should include here - feel free to send it in to us at [email protected] 

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Editorial by Arman, Curation by Nicola.