The Week’s Clean Tech Industry News Roundup

Khosla on Obama’s climate goals and the impact on cleantech investing. He opens up about Obama’s climate change plan and how it will effect investment in the space, saying his firm is focusing on less capital-intensive areas. Click here

And a new WSJ/NBC poll found that 67% of Americans support the new EPA rules on carbon emissions.

What does Tesla’s open patents mean for clean tech?  Tesla CEO Elon Musk and economists alike argue that patents stifle innovation, and opening up patents may be a good model for cleantech going forward. Click here

CleanTech companies are moving to China. China has become an attractive place for U.S. cleantech startups to bring their technologies to market, exemplified by Boston-Power and EcoMotors. Click here

And Steve Westly of the Westly Group discusses why he has zeroed in on China’s cleantech ecosystem, after recently taking a Chinese waste-to-energy company public.

Mosaic launches platform to support solar on non-profits. The new online platform will allow people to vote for solar installations atop non-profit buildings. Click here

The Uber revolution is just beginning, and no cabbie protest can stop it. The Guardian’s Tech Columnist Dan Gillmor discusses the sharing economy value proposition and how it’s sparking more efficient use of limited resources. Click here

And the sharing economy arrives in Singapore with new business association for collaborative consumption.  Girl Meets Dress founder Anna Bance discusses how she is capitalizing on the demise of ownership and helping to limit the urge to splurge.

Pittsburgh wins Urban Green Council’s top award for energy efficient buildings at an event in NYC. Pittsburgh asked building owners and managers to commit to 50 percent reductions in energy use, water use, and transportation emissions by the year 2030. Click here

China and U.S. collaborate on energy efficiency. At the China-U.S. Energy Efficiency Forum, officials signed deals that include a distributed energy program in Shanghai’s tourism resort zone and a training program for corporate energy efficiency management. Click here

Fundings & Deals

Emerald Technology Ventures announces new investors in cleantech fund. Suncor Energy, SK Group and Ecolab will join existing investors in its Cleantech Fund III, which invests in early and expansion stage companies in the energy, water and materials sectors. They join existing investors including ABB, Clariant, Evonik, JSR, MAHLE, Sibelco, Sulzer and family offices. Click here

U.K.’s Earth Capital commits $407M million to energy projects. It’s studying investing in seven to eight onshore wind, waste-to-energy, and solar projects. Click here

Plant-based packing company Avantium raises $50M. Avantium announced that it has closed a financing round $50M from a consortium Swire Pacific, The Coca-Cola Company, DANONE, ALPLA, and existing shareholders.Click here

Sunverge Energy Completes $15M Series B Funding Round. The leading developer and manufacturer of distributed energy management systems announced the round led by the Southern Cross Renewable Energy Fund and joined by the Venture Capital Unit of Siemens and Total Energy Ventures. Click here

CleanFeet Investors Invests $1.5M in wood pellet boiler company Pelletco. Click here

DOE signs $187 million deal with Southern Co. for carbon capture technology. Under the deal, Southern Co. will test both pre- and post-combustion carbon-capture technologies, as well as materials and processes that support advanced fossil-fuel conversion systems, primarily coal gasification. Click here

Quebec’s CO2 Solutions is launching a U.S. joint carbon capture pilot. The pilot will test CO2′s enzyme-based carbon capture solvent with NSG’s NeuStream high mass transfer gas-liquid contactor technology at a facility in Colorado. Click here

UK-based Onzo, which compiles energy data for utilities, closed a $2M round. The company is using the funds to study smart meter data in the U.S. Investors include West Coast Capital and Cipio Partners. Click here

DOE invests $10M in smart grid software. The U.S. Energy Department is spending more than $10M to deploy software that will improve the efficiency of electrical grids. Click here

And DOE-backed Smarter Grid Solutions, a presenter at the Cleantech Startups Showcase in New York this week, has software that enables more capacity in the existing grid for distributed energy, and is doing work on grid resiliency with ConEdison in NYC.

Cornell University center awards $1.4M to bioenergy projects. The funds came from Cornell’s David R. Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future’s Academic Venture Fund to 12 new university projects, including four related to biomass and bioenergy production from agriculture waste. Click here

 U.S. Department of Agriculture reaches out to energy industry. It will begin accepting applications June 16 from energy facilities interested in receiving forest or agricultural residues to generate clean energy. Click here

Israeli AgTech and biomed incubator Trendlines Group files for Toronto Stock Exchange IPO.  Click here

Research & Innovation

U.S. DOE utilizes nanotubes to advance lithium-ion batteries. Researchers at the DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory are turning to extremely tiny tubes and rods to boost power and durability in lithium-ion batteries. If successful, the batteries will last longer and perform better, leading to a cost advantage for electric vehicles. Click here

Aluminum batteries for extending range of lithium-ion. Aluminum maker Alcoa has teamed up with battery developer Phinergy to make a battery that’s capable of powering a car for over 1000 miles. Click here

Light-sensitive nanoparticles could lead to advanced solar cells. The colloidal quantum dots, being developed at the University of Toronto, achieve more efficient light absorption in the material by solving a problem in which a type of semiconductor loses its electrons when exposed to the oxygen in the air.  The research was published in Nature. 

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