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Third Derivative invests in 50 startups, including 3 from India, to battle climate change

Some of the problems D3’s entrepreneurs will look to address are rising surface temperature due to a growing demand for cooling in developing countries.

December 03, 2020 / 01:38 PM IST

Third Derivative (D3), an initiative of two US-based firms, has invested in 50 startups, including three from India, to combat climate change and create an ecosystem for these firms to grow, develop and find partners.

D3 is a joint venture between the Rocky Mountain Institute, a think tank focused on energy efficiency and innovation, and New Energy Nexus, a not-for-profit that backs clean-energy entrepreneurs with accelerators and networks.

“No one invests in hard-tech solutions. They are too capital intensive and too risky. There has been really one, Tesla, in the last decade. We will need two to three Teslas every year for the next decade to address climate change,” said Jon Creyts, Managing Director, Rocky Mountain Institute.

D3 picked the 50 startups from more than 600 applications that came in from 60 countries and from sectors such as electricity, transportation, buildings, industry, energy access, food and agriculture.

They are known as Cohort 417—named for this year’s peak atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration of 417.1 ppm (parts per million)recorded in May.


The inaugural cohort includes three climate tech start-ups from India.  LoadExx provides last-mile logistics with light electric vehicles(EVs), Three Wheels United finances light EVs, and rePurpose Global works in the recycling and waste reduction sector, D3 said in a statement.

“We have created an alternative model because we do not want to risk the future of our world on the basis of a system that isn't functioning right today,” Creyts added.

D3 will have an 18-month accelerator program to help these startups grow, seek partnerships and find investors. 

Some of the problems D3’s entrepreneurs will look to address include the rising surface temperature due to growing demand for cooling in developing countries; 5 percent of all electricity is lost in conduction on power lines and that over half the world’s electricity goes to drive motors.
M. Sriram
first published: Dec 3, 2020 01:38 pm

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