For Immediate Release
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WASHINGTON, D.C. (Oct. 3, 2019) – Innovators from across the District of Columbia and Maryland can now take advantage of up to $20 million in funding from the Exelon Foundation and Exelon Corp., Pepco's parent company, to support startups and the development of technologies that help mitigate climate change. The effort is part of the company's Climate Change Investment Initiative, or 2c2i, launched last week as part of Climate Week NYC, a joint initiative of the United Nations and the City of New York that brings together business, government and institutional leaders to discuss climate-change actions.
The Exelon Foundation will contribute $10 million over the next 10 years to fund the initiative, which will focus on clean energy and environmental technologies with potential for wide-scale commercialization. Exelon Corp. will match that grant with up to a $10 million in-kind investment of pro-bono services, including mentoring entrepreneurs on ways to access other sources of capital, structure business plans, allocate financial resources and meet regulatory requirements. The startups also will be able to tap into Exelon's internal innovation programs – Exelorate Growth, Constellation Technology Ventures and Partnership R&D – for counsel.
"The effects of climate change are being seen across the United States, and we need to be taking the necessary steps today, to ensure a cleaner and brighter future for tomorrow," said Dave Velazquez, president and CEO of Pepco Holdings. "This initiative complements our own efforts to advance transportation electrification, energy efficiency, distributed energy resources and other clean energy technologies across our District of Columbia and Maryland service area."
The initiative marks the company's latest effort to support programs that benefit the environment and adds to its continuing goal to create a clean, next-generation energy grid. Using the innovative approach of impact investing, the initiative will harness and unleash the power of private entrepreneurs that are working on cutting-edge technologies designed to generate a measurable, beneficial impact on climate change.
Just last week, at a decarbonization forum held by Pepco, former U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz said, "The role of the grid is going to be critically important and we need to use every tool in the tool box to get to a low carbon economy."
Through 2c2i, the Exelon Foundation will concentrate on startups working on greenhouse gas (GHG) mitigation or building local resiliency through climate change adaptation strategies, and that support achieving local sustainability goals that focus on:
While the startup companies can hail from anywhere, they must be doing work that benefits one of Exelon's six major urban markets, including Washington, D.C., Atlantic City, Baltimore, Chicago, Philadelphia and Wilmington, Del.
Applications for the Exelon Climate Change Investment Initiative can be submitted online at exelonfoundation.org. The 2019 submission deadline is October 25. Following initial reviews and finalist presentations, the Exelon Foundation expects to announce its first funded class of entrepreneurs in December, providing $1 million in total funding to eight to 12 seed-stage startups.