No longer a toss up

Plus lots more across climate tech and energy

Hi there,

Well that was quite a week, at least from a political and jurisprudence perspective in the U.S. The Earth keeps spinning. We’ve got lots of funding rounds and news to round up, ranging from major investments for EV and battery manufacturers to novel protein platforms and more.

In today’s email:

  • One story in a chart and a sentence

  • Climate tech and energy headlines from the week

  • Climate tech fundraising announcements

THIS WEEK IN CLIMATE TECH & ENERGY

One story in a sentence (and a chart)

• Situational awareness: According to one of the more esteemed election modelers in the U.S., (and according to modeling released before Thursday night’s debate), the November contest is no longer a tossup, with Trump favored to win. Link.

15 headlines

The good

• Volkswagen plans to invest up to $5B in Rivian to accelerate its own EV push. Link.

• The European Commission approved ~$3.2B in loan guarantees for a massive hydrogen project in Germany. The planned hydrogen pipeline will span more than 6,000 miles across Germany, leveraging existing natural gas pipelines. Link.

• Fervo Energy, a new leader in geothermal energy, announced two more PPAs totaling 320 MW with Southern California Edison, a large utility. Link.

• CATL has, surprisingly, already test-flown a battery-powered 4-ton electric aircraft. Basically no one is betting on batteries decarbonizing aviation; while a 4-ton aircraft isn't that large, the company is also working on a 8-ton civil electric aircraft with a projected 2,000-3,000 km range, which it expects to release by 2028. Link.

• ENSO, a U.K.-based startup focused on making tires that increase EV range and reduce pollution, plans to invest $500M in a U.S. plant to make up to 20M tires for EVs. The company aims for the plant to be operational by 2027. Link.

• Heirloom, a carbon removal company, said it will invest $475M to build its first direct air capture plant in Shreveport, Louisiana. The company aims for the first plant to come online by 2026 and remove 17,000 tons of carbon dioxide annually. Link.

• Avangrid installed its tenth wind turbine at the Vineyard Wind 1 offshore wind project in Massachusetts, which, with 136 MW of capacity online, is now the largest operating offshore wind project in the United States. Link.

• A week after a bill passed to support nuclear fission in the U.S., a bill supporting nuclear fusion passed as well. The Fusion Energy Act will codify the Nuclear Regulatory Commission's regulatory authority over commercial fusion energy systems to (ideally) streamline regulatory support development of commercial plants. Link.

The inbetweens

• Despite sea level rise, islands like the Maldives are not necessarily shrinking. My take here is that we can be deeply concerned about climate change without falling peril to the folly of making overly concrete predictions in complex systems. Link.

• Lufthansa, the major German airliner, is introducing "environmental surcharges" to cover the cost of acquiring more sustainable aviation fuels. Link.

• Denmark plans to introduce a new tax on farmers for their greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. Whether that will benefit the globe or shift imports to places like Brazil, which has a high emissions footprint associated with its beef and dairy production, is a bigger question. Link.

• Summit Carbon Solutions received approval from the Iowa Utilities Board to build a 688-mile CO2 pipeline through 29 counties in North Dakota. The company was also granted the right to use eminent domain, i.e., force landowners to provide access for the pipeline to tunnel underneath their property, as needed. Link.

• The Supreme Court overturned 'Chevron Deference,' a principle of administrative law that dictates courts should defer to interpretations made by administrative agencies charged with enforcing statutes within their areas of expertise. For more on the implications, I’ve linked a resource I found insightful in the second link here. Link. Link.

The bad

• Universal Hydrogen is shutting down operations, a year or so after it pioneered some of the first hydrogen-powered flights. Link.

• Mcdonald's binned a plant-based burger it tested in two cities, citing weak demand. Link.

CURATED DEALS

Larger funding rounds

🔋 Sila, based out of Alameda, CA, raised $375M in Series G funding to complete its factory in Washington state. Sutter Hill Ventures led. More here. (U.S., Energy / Transportation)

🔬 EvolutionaryScale, based out of New York, raised $142M in seed funding to use AI to help scientists design and discover new proteins. Nat Friedman, Daniel Gross, and Lux Capital co-led. More here. (U.S., Synthetic Biology)

🔌 Char.gy, based out of London, raised ~$127M in equity funding from CIIF to expand its EV charging network. More here. (U.K., Transportation)

🧊 SkyCell, based out of Zug, Switzerland, raised $116M in Series D funding to develop a more sustainable temperature-controlled supply chain for pharmaceuticals. Tybourne Capital Management, Catalyst, and others invested. More here. (Switzerland, Industry)

🤖 Bright Machines, based out of San Francisco, raised $106M in equity funding to make automated manufacturing systems for manufacturers of products like batteries. BlackRock led; Nvidia and Microsoft invested. More here. (U.S., Industry)

🔌 Be.EV, based out of Manchester, U.K., raised ~$70M in equity funding from NatWest and KfW IPEX-Bank to expand its fast EV charging network. More here. (U.K., Transportation)

⬇️ Neustark, based out of Bern, Switzerland, raised $69M in equity funding for its carbon capture business. Decarbonization Partners led. More here. (Switzerland, Industry)

📊 Prewave, based out of Vienna, Austria, raised ~$67.1M in Series B funding for its supply-chain intelligence platform that includes a focus on sustainability. Hedosophia led. More here. (Austria, Data Applications)

♻️ Samsara Eco, based out of Sydney, raised $66.5M in equity funding for its enzyme-based technology that breaks down plastics and other materials. Temasek and Main Sequence co-led. More here. (Australia, Materials)

Medium-sized funding rounds

🧪 Aether Fuels, based out of San Francisco, raised $34M to upcycle carbon into more sustainable fuels for aviation and maritime shipping. AP Ventures led. More here. (U.S., Transportation)

🔋 e-Zinc, based out of Toronto, raised $31M in Series A2 funding for its zinc-based long-duration energy storage technology. Evok Innovations led. More here. (Canada, Energy)

🔌 Solus Power, based out of London, raised ~$28M in equity funding from Petra Equity Partners to make portable EV chargers. More here. (U.K., Transportation)

🤖 Formic, based out of Chicago, raised $27.4M in equity funding for its robot-as-a-service offering for manufacturing companies. Blackhorn Ventures led. More here. (U.S., Industry)

📊 LiveEO, based out of Berlin, raised ~$26.8M in Series B funding for its infrastructure monitoring and climate risk assessment platform. NordicNinja and DeepTech and Climate Fonds led. More here. (Germany, Data Applications)

📊 Climate X, based out of London, raised $18M in Series A funding for its climate risk analytics and data platform. Google Ventures led. More here. (U.K., Data Applications)

🔋 Libattion, based out of Opfikon, Switzerland, raised ~$15M in equity funding to upcycle used EV batteries into stationary energy storage. A&G Energy Transition Tech Fund led. More here. (Switzerland, Energy)

Smaller funding rounds

⚡ Vertus Energy, based out of Vienna, Austria, raised $9.4M in seed funding for its waste-to-energy business. Energy Capital Ventures led. More here. (Austria, Energy)

🧪 Travertine Technologies, based out of Boulder, CO, raised $8.5M in equity funding to upcycle sulfate byproducts into sulfuric acid and green hydrogen, which has both chemical decarbonization and carbon removal implications. Holcim MAQER Ventures led. More here. (U.S., Industry / Carbon Removal)

⬇️ Sirona Technologies, based out of Brussels, Belgium, raised ~$6.4M in seed funding for its direct air capture technology. LocalGlobe and XAnge led. More here. (Belgium, Carbon Removal)

🔋 Feon Energy, based out of Woburn, MA, raised $6.1M in seed funding to create new electrolyte formulations for advanced battery chemistries. Fine Structure Ventures led. More here. (U.S., Materials)

💱 Net Zero Company, based out of Stockholm, raised $5.5M in seed funding to create a carbon removal token hosted on a blockchain. Oilinvest, VARO Energy, and SilviCarbon invested. More here. (Sweden, Carbon Removal)

🔋 VoltR, based out of Angers, France, raised ~$4.3M French to manufacture and reprocess lithium-ion batteries. C4 Ventures, Exergon, and others participated. More here. (France, Materials)

🌱 Foray Bioscience, based out of Cambridge, raised $3.04M in seed funding to build biomanufacturing tools to make molecules and materials without extracting them from natural ecosystems. ReGen Ventures led; Superorganism and others invested. More here. (U.S., Biodiversity)

🏘️ Heatio, based out of Liverpool, U.K., raised ~$2.5M in equity funding for its residential energy management and VPP platform. Ascension led. More here. (U.K., Built Environment)

✈️ Estuaire, based out of Paris, raised ~$2.4M in seed funding for its flight data platform focused on reducing aviation emissions. Satgana led. More here. (France, Transportation)

🐛 Scoutlabs, based out of Budapest, Hungary, raised $2M in equity funding for its product that uses solar to help farmers monitor and manage pest infestations. Depo Ventures, Interactive Venture Partners, and others invested. More here. (Hungary, Food & Agriculture)

🔎 Mirico, based out of Harwell, U.K., raised $2M in equity funding to commercialize its laser-based sensing technology for methane monitoring applications in oil and gas infrastructure. Shell Ventures and New Climate Ventures led. More here. (U.K., Methane)

🥩 Immobazyme, based out of Stellenbosch, South Africa, raised $1.3M to scale its precision fermentation-derived proteins for cultivated meat. University Technology Fund led. More here. (South Africa, Food & Agriculture)

🥩 MOA Foodtech, based out of Noain, Spain, raised an undisclosed amount of Series A funding to upcycle ag waste into fermented proteins. ICOS Capital led. More here. (Spain, Food & Agriculture)

🥩 Orbillion Bio, based out of San Francisco, received an investment from Earth Venture Capital for its cultivated Wagyu beef cells. More here. (U.S., Food & Agriculture)

✈️ LanzaJet, based out of Deerfield, IL, raised an undisclosed amount from MUFG for its ethanol-to-SAF business. More here. (U.S., Transportation)

Other funding rounds

💰 Blackhorn Ventures, based out of Denver, closed its third fund with $150M to invest in early-stage digital infrastructure and energy businesses. More here. (U.S., Funds)

💰 8090 Industries, based out of New York, raised $100M+ for its second fund to invest in industrial companies and sectors including decarbonization, energy, and infrastructure. More here. (U.S., Funds)

💰 Ironspring Ventures, based out of Austin, TX, closed its second fund with $100M to “invest in the industrial revolution,” including in manufacturing, construction, transportation, and energy. More here. (U.S., Funds)

💸 Refactor Capital, based out of Burlingame, CA, raised $50M to invest in “seed-stage hard tech companies that deploy technology to enhance planetary and human health.” More here. (U.S., Funds)

Ciao,

– Nick

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