Sep 5, 2019

Smart buildings startup 75F raises $18 million from Bill Gates and Big Oil

Bill Gates. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The smart buildings startup 75F Inc. has raised $18 million in Series A funding from backers including the Bill Gates-led Breakthrough Energy Ventures and the Oil & Gas Climate Initiative's VC arm.

Why it matters: Commercial buildings are a significant source of carbon emissions, so tech that helps make them more efficient is important from a climate standpoint. Plus, it's the first time OGCI, a coalition of many of the world's largest oil-and-gas companies, has invested in the buildings space.

How it works: "75F offers a vertically-integrated smart building solution that includes wireless sensors, equipment controllers and cloud-based software delivering predictive, proactive building automation right out-of-the-box," yesterday's announcement states.

The big picture: Per Fast Company, "The company has calculated that if its technology was deployed nationally, it would save an equivalent amount of emissions as closing 90 coal plants or saving 827 million barrels of oil."

Go deeper: Axios' Deep Dive on smart cities

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To wean off natural gas, cities push for all-electric new buildings

Natural gas meters outside residential townhomes. Photo: Tim Boyle/Getty Images

A growing number of cities are eliminating natural gas hookups in new homes and buildings as they work to reduce emissions and help meet climate targets.

The big picture: Fossil fuels burned in buildings contribute a tenth of overall U.S. greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. While coal use continues to decline, natural gas use has held steady, making it a prime target in efforts to decarbonize.

Go deeperArrowOct 2, 2019

Fossil fuels bracing for crude game of musical chairs

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Let’s hark back to the childhood game of musical chairs to talk about fossil fuels and climate change (yes really!).

My thought bubble: The world’s oil, natural gas and coal producers are, metaphorically speaking, encircling a bunch of chairs, and as the world tightens its grip on heat-trapping emissions, the use of these fuels drops — and so does the number of chairs.

Go deeperArrowSep 30, 2019

Retail's climate change moment

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

As world leaders waffle on policies to head off the extraordinary climate change threat, the retail sector — America’s largest private employer — is moving on its own to cut back its environmental harm.

Why it matters: E-commerce and retail giants pump out emissions and pollution through mass manufacturing, incessant speedy shipping and uncurbed waste. Per one estimate, the fashion industry alone will burn up a quarter of the world's carbon budget by 2050.

Go deeperArrowSep 26, 2019