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Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Major power and oil companies are funding a tech startup that helps detect risks to critical infrastructure — including energy networks.

Driving the news: Urbint just announced $60 million in Series C funding to scale its platform that uses AI to "stop failures, damages, and worker injuries before they happen."

  • New investors include American Electric Power and OGCI Climate Investments, the VC arm of a coalition of oil majors called the Oil and Gas Climate Initiative.
  • The round is led by the VC firm Energize Ventures, which is another new investor, as well as existing backers like Energy Impact Partners and National Grid Partners.

The big picture: New York-based Urbint — whose customers include Southern Co. and National Grid — says infrastructure legislation moving through Congress will expand the need for threat deterrence.

How it works: Urbint's tech has applications for power and gas utilities, telecom, oil-and-gas projects and pipelines, and more. It aims to ID risks including fires, outages, explosions and worker accidents.

  • It's designed for uses like predicting power line failures that can cause wildfires, and gas pipeline leaks.
  • The company says the transmission build-out envisioned in the infrastructure legislation and related proposals to accelerate renewables deployment will also require new risk deterrence.

Go deeper

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Sep 24, 2021 - Energy & Environment

Finance regulators becoming involved in climate change

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Biden-era financial regulators are getting increasingly involved in climate — if not as much as some advocates want — and this week is bringing fresh signs of the trend.

Driving the news: The Securities and Exchange Commission revealed that it's sending letters to corporations seeking more complete disclosures about their climate-related risks.

At least 3 dead after Amtrak train derails in Montana

Photo: Jacob Cordeiro/Twitter

An Amtrak train derailed near Joplin, Montana, resulting in at least three deaths and multiple injuries to passengers and crew on Saturday, per authorities and a company statement.

The big picture: 141 passengers and 16 crew members were estimated to be on the Empire Builder train, traveling from Chicago to Seattle and Portland, when eight of the 10 cars derailed about 4p.m., Amtrak said early Sunday.

Updated 5 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Federal judge blocks vaccine mandate for NYC teachers

Students are dismissed from the first day of school at PS 133 in Brooklyn on Sept. 13. Photo: Michael Nagle/Xinhua via Getty Images

A federal appeals court is set to hear a challenge Wednesday to a vaccine mandate planned for New York City school employees.

Why it matters The vaccine mandate was set to begin on Monday, prompting concerns over staffing shortages in schools across the nation's largest school system. But a judge on Friday temporarily blocked the measure, per AP.

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