Microsoft founder Bill Gates, through his climate investment fund, Breakthrough Energy, will infuse $1.5 billion into a joint venture with the Department of Energy (DOE) to accelerate the development of clean energy technologies, according to a CNN report.
The fund is contingent on the $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill, which still needs to be passed by the U.S. House of Representatives.
Gates said, “If the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act becomes law, this collaboration will not only send us on a more durable path to net-zero but will create both immediate and long-term jobs in communities across the country.”
Breakthrough Energy’s Catalyst project would invest the amount over three years in public-private partnerships to boost technology demonstrations for sustainable aviation fuel, green hydrogen, direct air capture, and energy storage.
Breakthrough aims to utilize the investment to accumulate $15 billion to bring emerging technologies to the market. The Breakthrough Energy Catalyst program, which unites private and public funding for decarbonization technologies, will co-fund demonstrations with DOE and support projects through the Loan Programs Office.
Breakthrough Energy Catalyst will help fast track include sustainable aviation fuel and green hydrogen, providing power without fossil fuels. Other projects include direct air capture, which would capture carbon dioxide straight from the atmosphere, and long-duration energy storage.
“Avoiding a climate disaster will require a new industrial revolution. We need to make the technologies and products that don’t cause emissions as cheap as those that do, reducing what I call Green Premiums, so the whole world can afford them and reach our climate goals,” Gates said.
Gates added that a public-private partnership would speed up the deployment of these technologies.
Recently, Gates, Fortistar, Reliance New Energy Solar Limited, and a few other investors had invested $144 million in Ambri, a U.S.-based energy storage company.
Mercom had earlier reported the launch of the Breakthrough Energy Catalyst program to boost cleantech funding and innovation. Bill Gates has teamed with a group of philanthropists, companies, and governments for this program. The program plans to promote investments in clean technologies that are critical for the energy transition to eliminate greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The program also focuses on accelerating innovation in clean energy projects to ensure the costs decline.
Arjun Joshi is a staff reporter at Mercom India. Before joining Mercom, he worked as a technical writer for enterprise resource software companies based in India and abroad. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Journalism, Psychology, and Optional English from Garden City University, Bangalore. More articles from Arjun Joshi.