Jan 29, 2024 - Climate

Colorado poised to become climate tech hub with $160M federal award

Illustration of a light bulb glowing with Earth inside

Illustration: Natalie Peeples/Axios

Colorado's transition from an oil and gas state to a leader in climate-proof technology is getting a huge lift with a new federal investment worth up to $160 million over 10 years.

Why it matters: The award is seed money to build a new billion-dollar industry and establish the state as a global leader in developing technologies to address the effects of climate change.

Driving the news: The Colorado-Wyoming Climate Resilience project, based along the Front Range, is aimed at developing and commercializing technology to monitor, mitigate and adapt to extreme weather, wildfires, drought and greenhouse gas emissions.

  • The Innosphere Ventures-led project is one of 10 in the country to win funding through the National Science Foundation, which announced the winners yesterday.

State of play: The promising technologies the effort plans to scale include carbon sequestration in soil, methane and nitrogen capture from agriculture and extraction industries and water management.

  • If successful, it would create a new economic driver for both states.

What they're saying: "These technologies are not scaling nearly fast enough," the project's leader Mike Freeman tells us. "We need to create more, scale more, and we think that could be the unique contribution from the [project]."

By the numbers: The $160 million will draw an additional $550 million in state incentives and private investment for climate technology, advocates say.

  • The total economic impact is estimated at $1.5 billion and 22,000 jobs.

The bottom line: "Ultimately the adoption of proven trustworthy approaches helps society achieve climate resilience," Freeman says.


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