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HomeGreen Technology‘How We Survive’: Journalist-turned-VC Molly Wooden on local weather tech

‘How We Survive’: Journalist-turned-VC Molly Wooden on local weather tech


Excellent can’t be the enemy of excellent. That’s the motto by which journalist-turned-climate-tech investor Molly Wooden makes funding choices.

Final month, throughout a keynote dialog at GreenBiz 22, in Scottsdale, Arizona, Wooden talked about how her expertise as a multimedia enterprise journalist overlaying expertise, economics and the local weather disaster led to her pivot to work in enterprise capital. She is managing director at Launch, a VC that invests in early-stage local weather options. 

“I’m leaving media to change into an investor working with all of the local weather tech that I’ve gotten so obsessive about over the previous three years,” Wooden introduced in November when she made the change. 

Wooden is understood for incorporating the themes of local weather tech, local weather justice and resilience into her reporting. The “How We Survive” podcast with Market will get into the economics, tech and human tales behind local weather adaptation. She has additionally co-hosted some episodes of This Week in Startups alongside the present’s founder and CEO, Jason Calacanis. Wooden stated she actually needed to take the strategy of reporting on local weather tech by speaking about options, which began about 4 years in the past.

The motivation to get entangled within the local weather tech VC motion was private. Wooden stated her hairdresser launched her to local weather scientist Inez Fung, who primarily has been saying, “We’re to the purpose the place we’ve tipped on some degree” in terms of this local weather disaster, and we want new tech options now. This was when it clicked for Wooden that she needed and wanted to do extra about this drawback past conserving individuals knowledgeable together with her reporting. 

How we survive with lithium batteries 

Wooden describes herself as a solutions-oriented lady who doesn’t like to speak about issues; as an alternative, she will get all the way down to fixing. Her long-form podcast “How We Survive,” which encompasses eight episodes, breaks down how tech options will have an effect on the local weather disaster, the chance for change and obstacles that might come up. The narrative focuses on batteries particularly, together with lithium mining and the lithium provide chain in the USA. When Wooden was researching renewable power, many roads led to lithium, so she adopted the subject in a approach that will be interesting to the mainstream media.

“I’ve been obsessive about batteries for a number of years as a result of they appear like type of a giant deal within the transition to renewable power,” Wooden stated. “Sure, it’s a podcast about lithium and batteries, however it’s about Indigenous rights, eco-terrorism, loopy enterprise espionage tales and it’s in regards to the communities which are impacted or determined for these options in varied methods.”

As we take into consideration formulating options, we’ve to be very trustworthy about who’s impacted, what meaning and the way we talk and discuss that.

As she explored this matter, Wooden stated what struck her essentially the most was “how human people are.” What she means is there are all the time reactions to peoples’ actions. She additionally stated creating actual options to handle local weather change requires extra honesty and making onerous selections. 

“As we take into consideration formulating options, we’ve to be very trustworthy about who’s impacted, what meaning and the way we talk and discuss that,” she stated. 

A few of these onerous selections embody the potential of lithium extraction in the USA, Wooden stated, which could possibly be labor-intensive and never essentially the most environmentally pleasant observe. 

Wooden’s shift to the local weather tech VC area

Photo voltaic and renewable power are a few of Wooden’s main curiosity areas for enterprise capital investing. Lots of potential innovations might be game-changers, she stated, however she’s searching for those that can have essentially the most influence on shoppers and behavioral change.

“There should be Silicon Valley silver bullets. That is part of our resolution matrix. A matrix that features the whole lot, we want all of it,” Wooden stated. 

What’s going to it take to get us to the place we have to go? 

Wooden concluded her “How We Survive” discuss throughout GreenBiz 22 with a name to motion: We have to get to work now. She stated firms creating tech options to handle the local weather disaster must be brutally trustworthy about what could possibly be improper with their options — after which nonetheless share these options with the world as a result of they can assist in different wanted areas. 

“Excellent can’t be the enemy of the answer,” Wooden stated. “If there may be a solution, we want all of them.”

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