Alliance Blog

Charting a Greener Future: An Insightful Dive into Climate Tech Investing

A recent report from Pitchbook showed a 14.5% year over year decline in capital raised for climate tech in 2023, yet it predicts a stellar 2024 in part due to “favorable regulation and policy, high energy prices, and consumer demand, to name a few.” This reported shift in the winds for climate tech investing was felt by the 33 founders who joined our recent virtual Ask Me Anything in late February which included climate tech investors, Cody Simms, a Partner at MCJ Collective, and Pilar Carvajo Lucena who is Head of Investments and Partnerships at Third Derivative. This climate focused panel was in support of the Edison Track (a special component of the SoCal Venture Pipeline program) that specifically connects cleantech startups with investors as well as industry experts at Edison International

The virtual conversation was moderated by Iván Markman, former CBO and Strategic Advisor at Yahoo and current angel investor and Alliance Board member with a passion for climate tech investing. Iván led the conversation by highlighting questions submitted ahead of time by founders leading climate tech startups. The panelists expressed their optimism for fundraising in climate tech because of the wide range of capital available for clean climate companies, including non-dilutive impact support, local and federal grants, and industry-specific incentives. The panelists encouraged the founders to focus on capital support beyond the VCs while prototyping new hardware and software, such as SBIR/STTR awards, which disburse $4 Billion in non-dilutive funding annually. 

Additional guidance from Pilar: once the MVP is set and ready for market deployment, it is very important to communicate the solution’s unique insights and value proposition to the investors. Cody suggested that founders provide regular updates on progress and milestones reached that showcase customers’ needs and that de-risk the venture, which will help make the case for viability when meeting with investors. Both aspects of the story will build confidence with the investor that the startup is venture-ready. They both indicated that funding is available for the right startups who are able to communicate these important indicators of strength and potential success.

At the Alliance, we hope to continue to boost the wind in the sails of climate tech founders who apply to participate in our “founder to funder” matching program called the SoCal Venture Pipeline. Companies selected for the program will be offered warm introductions to the VCs in our network, which now includes over 30 VCs focused on climate tech investing. If you have questions, please contact our Venture Outreach Manager, Jay Velasco (jay at

About the Edison Track: The Alliance was awarded a grant by Edison to create the Edison Track series, which provides founders building technologies within climate, clean energy, sustainability, disaster relief/prevention, wildfire mitigation, or drones additional access to relevant investors and industry content in this key SoCal growth sector.