May 18, 2018

New gift will catalyze solutions to sustainability challenges

Generous donation from Emmett Foundation to grow CBEY's work in entrepreneurship and clean energy finance

The Yale Center for Business and the Environment (CBEY) is announcing a very generous and transformative donation from the Emmett Foundation to support its mission of developing leaders who are uniquely capable of addressing social and environmental challenges.

The Gift

The gift will help CBEY expand its rapidly growing focus on innovation and entrepreneurship, develop an online certificate program in clean energy finance, and increase the reach of the Clean Energy Finance Forum, an industry-leading publication.

For the past decade, CBEY has offered students a forum to pursue and refine novel solutions to sustainability challenges, from new ventures with a triple bottom line

Peter Boyd, one of CBEY's Executive Fellows

to alternative financial models that support responsible investment. Central to this work have been the recent appointments of three Executive Fellows: Vincent Stanley from Patagonia, Peter Boyd from the Carbon War Room, and Jennifer Molnar from The Nature Conservancy.

“This incredibly generous gift will allow us to bring on more experts in residence and launch a series of new initiatives—including the Climate Change Entrepreneurship Program and a Net Zero action group—all of which are designed to elicit creative solutions to persistent problems,” says Brad Gentry, co-faculty director at CBEY and Senior Associate Dean at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.

The Impact

Alongside its work on innovation and entrepreneurship, CBEY has established itself as a leading resource on clean energy finance. The new gift will expand this work in two ways. First, CBEY, in partnership with the Yale Center for Teaching and Learning and the CT Green Bank, will design and launch a new certificate program on “Financing and Deploying Clean Energy.” This year-long program—a blend of online and in-person teaching—will draw on Yale’s world-class faculty and practitioners to provide both the fundamentals of energy planning and finance, as well as more specialized offerings such as clean energy project finance and policy incentives for clean energy projects.

Clean Energy Finance Forum

In a related effort, the gift will catalyze expansion of the Clean Energy Finance Forum, a biweekly student-run publication with more than 7,000 subscribers across the United States. The Forum will launch a new “States of Clean Energy Innovation” series, which will cover emerging business or financial models in every state across the country. In addition, the forum will target efforts in states where clean energy is only starting to take root, making the Forum’s actionable insights accessible to professionals in all parts of the country.

“It is vital that we all work on solutions to the serious environmental challenges we face,” says Dan Emmett, Chairman of the real estate investment trust Douglas Emmett Inc. and member of the CBEY Advisory Board. “We believe that effective partnerships between environmentalists, educators and businesses will be crucial, and CBEY provides key leadership in this effort.”

Match opportunities

For the next five years, this gift provides a matching opportunity for up to $70,000 per year. Opportunities to help CBEY reach this match and expand our work even further can be found here.