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Riled Up is a journal of science, the environment, exploration, new technology, and related commentary.  Contributors include scientists, explorers, engineers, and others who provide perspectives and context not typically offered in general news circulation.  For interested readers, additional resources are included.

The Conservation Alliance

Breakthrough Energy

Breakthrough Energy



New Venture logo (credit: Breakthrough Energy)



While some people embrace the past, software pioneer and philanthropist, Bill Gates, has a far more future-oriented vision:

to transform energy technologies for a carbonless future.

While renewable energy still provides a small percentage of current energy supplies it is growing fast. Gates has funded a new venture, Breakthrough Energy, representing a $1 billion effort to develop renewably energy. The new energy project will:

"finance emerging energy breakthroughs to deliver affordable and reliable energy with the goal of reducing global greenhouse gas emissions to near-zero."


            Bill Gates launches renewable energy venture (credit: file photo)

Announcing the new program of the Gates Foundation, Gates said:

"The Breakthrough Energy Coalition is a group of entrepreneurs, business leaders, and institutional investors who have committed to help bring promising new zero-emissions energy technologies to market. We are investing capital and working with over 20 countries to significantly increase their research investments that could lead to breakthrough innovations."

As part of the fund, Breakthrough Energy Ventures (BEV) was created by:

"a group of investors brought together in a new fund that is patient, flexible, and committed to the Coalition's principles. The Fund will collaborate with other investors, governments, research institutions, and corporate partners who understand scientific expertise, have a long-term horizon and a tolerance and understanding of the risks required to transform energy markets."

The venture established 4- key principals for projects to receive funding support: 1) the project must have a positive impact on the climate; 2) involve additional investment partners to leverage results; 3) demonstrate technology in a reasonable time for implementation; and 4) have a focus where the Fund can add value through their global network. Breakthroughs will be needed in: renewable energy generation and storage; improved efficiency in energy distribution and use; hydrogen powered vehicles; and small-scale nuclear power.

Bill Gates made his reputation showing practical uses of software in the 20th Century. We should wish him similar success for this renewable energy venture in the 21st. Its success will benefit the environment and economics for the entire planet besides generating enormous amounts of power, jobs, and wealth.


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