Storm Uri provides an example of what might be to come
Every day it seems that there are more news stories than the average person can digest. However, for many in Texas, Storm Uri broke critical energy and water infrastructure systems, causing loss of life and property damage measured in the hundreds of billions of dollars.
While it would be best if emissions were avoided to prevent climate change, it is becoming clear that we have passed the point of prevention and are living in a world with increased climate risks and we must adapt.
This is why Buoyant believes in investing in solutions for both climate mitigation and adaptation. Adaptation solutions range in form and function, with no silver bullet or one size fits all solution. Digital technologies can be especially helpful in identifying and measuring climate risk, and prescribing solutions like hardening infrastructure, underwriting parametric insurance, and sounding alarms for deadly floods, fires, and heat. Regardless of the solution, the goal of adaptation is the same: to understand and protect against the physical and economic risks we face.
A ton of great reporting has been done on this event, we are not going to try and outdo anyone, instead, we would like to highlight some of our favorites:
The polar vortex has been cited as the cause for global weather weirding and scientists are still working to learn more about how this weather pattern might impact us in the future.
Impacts of Uri seen across the United States, Uri left 4 million without electricity but also impacted water infrastructure leaving 12 million under a boil water notice or without water at all.
The natural gas infrastructure was pointed to as one of the main culprits due to freezing.
Officials and community organizations are now starting to look at how to prepare for these events in the future this includes planning for water infrastructure, electric power system, disaster recovery, natural gas, and system-wide solutions.
Help is still needed across multiple states for those impacted by the storms. See here for how to help.
We wish we would have…called out this Net-Zero Claim h/t to Bloomberg
What we are reading
We really enjoyed reading Better Ventures’ Climate Intelligence: The Digital Fabric for Climate Action, great to see others adding to the climate intelligence space, also check out our last newsletter and Climate Tech VC
How climate-induced volatility in precipitation caused a constant water crisis in India's sixth-largest city.
What we are listening to
The Daily: The blackout in Texas, a good high-level overview of Storm Uri impacts.
The Energy Gang: The Texas Grid Failure, a more detailed and nuanced description of the system failures.
Masters of Scale: Keep Humans in the Equation, How TaskRabbit CEO thinks about harnessing the power of the "human cloud" to solve almost any problem.
How female founders faired while fundraising in 2020, spoiler it was not a great year.
What we are watching
Farmers on the Frontline, a great BBC series on how the world will sustainably feed itself with a growing population, climate change, and a global pandemic.
Buoyant Venture updates
Buoyant Managing Director Amy Francetic participated in the Yale Economic Development Symposium discussing economic opportunities in the clean energy transition & green economy.
For fun (since you’ve made it this far…)
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The Lighthouse is a resource for climate tech updates and a channel for us to regularly share our perspective on Buoyant’s investment thesis and industry sectors. We know we are not alone in producing great content and will amplify the voices of others by highlighting those resources we find thought-provoking.