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Expert voices: de-risk and deploy

Photo Illustration of Mona Dajani

Photo Illustration: Natalie Peeples/Axios. Photo: Courtesy of Shearman & Sterling

Climate risk is more than a budget line item. Investors and executives need to also account for the impacts their companies impose on the world — an ESG concept known as "double materiality," deals lawyer Mona Dajani tells Axios.

Why she matters: Dajani joined Shearman & Sterling last month as global head of energy, infrastructure, hydrogen, mobility, renewables and water. She's also a C3E Ambassador for the U.S. Department of Energy.

  • Oh, and she once saved a client's life during a deposition.

This interview was lightly edited for length.

What, in your view, was the big story in climate tech this week?

  • Researchers at DexMat and Rice University developed a hydrocarbon material that can replace copper in solar panels, wind turbines and EVs, while being a carbon sink at the same time.

What would you add to the narrative?

  • The potential of carbon nanotubes to transform the clean energy sector is enormous. The sector could grow to $10.5 billion by 2028.
  • To reach its full potential and maximize its impact, it must attract increased investment — meaning companies must put the technology to the test to demonstrate its real-world value.

By contrast, what's going under-noticed?

In three-ish words, what change would you make to climate tech investing?

  • More female voices.

Three fun things:

💼 First job: Attorney at Kirkland and Ellis.

👑 Proudest deal: One that combined offshore wind, solar and storage, and green hydrogen fuel.

🤦 Facepalm deal: I was a baby lawyer defending my first deposition. My client, an elderly man, started having a stroke. My opposing counsel refused to stop the deposition and kept going. I gave my client CPR until an ambulance came. Thankfully, he survived! After that, I decided not to ever do litigation again

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