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Climate Tech Finance

Increasing Access to Capital for Cleaner Air

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Our Story

Climate Tech Finance is a first-of-its-kind partnership designed to accelerate the development and adoption of technologies that reduce greenhouse gases in the Bay Area. Established in 2018, Climate Tech Finance is a program of the Bay Area Air Quality Management District operating in partnership with the California Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank (IBank).

Our Role

Our Role

Climate Tech Finance bridges a financial gap between climate entrepreneurs needing working capital and commercial and community banks seeking to participate in the high-growth, high-impact clean technology market. Climate Tech Finance works across the entire innovation-adoption spectrum: offering loan guarantees that de-risk the lending process and help climate entrepreneurs secure working capital, and lending directly to public agencies and other organizations seeking to speed their adoption of climate technologies.

Our Tools

Our Tools

We help bridge the Valley of Death by offering loan guarantees that de-risk the lending process for banks, thereby opening up new sources of funding for climate tech entrepreneurs. Climate Tech Finance also lends directly to public agencies and other non-profit organizations seeking to speed their adoption of climate technologies. The Air District identifies climate entrepreneurs and small businesses, assesses the merits of the technologies, and estimates greenhouse gas emission reductions and social impacts to ensure that proposed projects improve the climate and community in an equitable and sustainable way.

Our Impact

Our Impact

The Climate Tech Finance program has supported on $20.7M in loans for climate projects in the past year. The program established a roster of over a dozen climate-oriented banks and a growing pipeline of climate projects in need of near-term financing. Climate Tech Finance has also seen increasing inbound interest from borrowers and lenders, fueled by imminent regulatory changes and banks’ goalsetting around climate investments.

We believe this unique model will accelerate the development and adoption of climate technologies and have a measurable effect on Bay Area air quality and the global climate. Learn more in our 2023 Annual Report.

Our Equity Goals

Our Equity Goals

We are steadfastly committed to advancing social equity within the climate tech sector. Central to this mission is our Social Equity Review, a critical component of our assessment process.

Through this review, we evaluate the potential social impact and inclusiveness of the proposed climate tech solutions. We analyze the ways in which these ventures strive to address historical inequities, foster diversity, and promote inclusivity within their operations and broader community impact.

By holding our applicants to these high standards of social responsibility, we aim to foster a climate tech landscape that is not only innovative and sustainable, but also just and inclusive.

Our Team

Areana Flores

Areana Flores

Areana Flores adamantly believes that it truly takes a village to improve our air quality and mitigate the impacts from greenhouse gases so that we can protect not only ourselves but our creatures, plants, and planet. Dedicated to reducing air pollution, she serves as a Program Lead for the Climate Tech Finance. Her current position builds on her previous experiences as an Environmental Planner where she assisted in the development and management of health-risk tools for air pollution, worked with developers undergoing the CEQA process, and helped draft community-level emission reduction plans. Areana has found Climate Tech Finance to be the innovative channel needed to improve air quality in the Bay Area and beyond.

Tamara Kohne

Tamara Kohne

Tamara Kohne joined the Air District in 2019 to work on Climate Tech Finance program. Tamara drives the moving parts of the operation with the Climate Tech Finance team, clients and partners. She cultivates relationships with startups through the initial engagement, application process, project approval and lending. Tamara also leads the marketing efforts and catalyzes the pipeline growth. Previously, Tamara worked with the statewide toxics and criteria emissions inventory at the California Air Resources Board. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Economics and Policy from UC Berkeley.

George McDaniel

George McDaniel

George McDaniel is a highly experienced lender and investor. He has been CEO of a commercial bank, CEO of an investment banking firm and the founder of a private equity firm focused on buyouts. He is also the co-founder of a nonprofit focused on affordable housing development and capital access for underserved communities and populations and has served on numerous community and private corporation boards of directors. He also has been an independent consultant focused on turnarounds, real estate development and specialized financings. He has been involved in environmental and climate related financings for many years. Currently, he is the lead finance principal in a Climate Tech Finance partnership involving the financing of the acceleration of critically needed climate technologies which significantly reduce CO2 emissions on a statewide basis. He is also a US Army Veteran of Vietnam and is a disabled veteran.

John Meredith

John Meredith

John Meredith has been in the green project financing space for nearly 20 and now is co-founder of Meridian Commercial Finance Consultants which assists banks in developing Green Finance Divisions. John is also on the Advisory Board for an electric vehicle charging company.  Prior, John co-founded two bank-owned equipment leasing / green finance departments. 

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