Showing posts from September, 2018

Water, Water Everywhere – But Where’s The Funding?

  How many times did you think about water this month? If you’re like most people in developed countries, you probably only thought about it when paying your water bill – or if there were news articles about floods or droughts or oceans. If you’re in parts of the world where water is not plentiful, the chances are that you thought about it if you had to plan your day around when water was going to come out of the tap. If, like many of the poor, you had to walk miles or stand in queues to collect drinking water, you probably spent a large part of your day thinking about it. Water is essential to life and yet, we don’t hear a great deal about innovation or venture capital funding or startups that are changing the world in this sector in popular media or news. Which brings up the question – where is the funding for innovation in this sector? Venture capital funding in water is a relatively small investment compared to the investment in high-tech or even in some of the other clean tech sec

Nature’s Supply And Demand Problem

  “Supply and demand” is a phrase that’s more commonly associated with economics and business than with the environment. And yet, when we think about it – Nature provides several services that we take for granted… until they aren’t there anymore. Clean air for example – natural systems have filtered and purified air around cities and homes for many years, until the output from our cities becomes too much for the natural system and then we start noticing the smog and pollution. Or flood control – mangroves in the coastal areas of the tropics provide buffers against storm surges and flooding from hurricanes, until they are cut down for development and then we are faced with multi-million dollar damages from a storm.   Several ecologists and economists have worked together to try and figure out how best to quantify or price the services that natural systems provide, often called ecosystem services. But what happens as the environment changes, the climate warms and several ecosystems are t