May 9, 2018 - Energy & Environment

VC veterans form public lands climate group

Coal plant Florida

The Big Bend coal fired power plant is located on Florida's West Coast. Photo: Andrew Lichtenstein/Corbis via Getty Images

Green-focused venture capital players have formed the Business Coalition for Conservation and Climate aimed at curbing emissions from public lands where the White House is seeking to widen fossil fuel development.

Why it matters: They hope to create a government-focused equivalent to what's already a robust network of sustainability and investor activists — groups like Ceres and the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures — that have long pushed private companies for more openness about climate risk.

One focus will be pushing for more transparency and disclosure about emissions in order to allow more widespread understanding of what transpires on federal lands.

The stakes: Public lands account for roughly 40% of U.S. coal production, and substantial — though much smaller — shares of U.S. oil and natural gas production.

Quoted: "Given this significant fossil fuel portfolio, it is clear that any meaningful national policy to address climate change must start with the lands over which we have the most authority," their announcement states.

Who they are: The founding members are:

  • Stuart & Marcella Bernstein, Goldman Sachs
  • Robert Keith, BearTooth Capital
  • Kevin Luzak, ArcherPoint Capital Management
  • Susan Mason, Aligned Ventures
  • Jon Powers, CleanCapital
  • Nancy Pfund, DBL Partners
  • Jonathan Silver, Tax Equity Advisors
  • Paul Smith, angel investor and former CEO
  • James M. Stone, Plymouth Rock Assurance
  • Ted Wang, Cowboy Ventures
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