This year’s theme for International Women’s Day, “Break the Bias”, could have been created for cleantech. When thinking about the people behind clean technologies, the inventors, engineers and even the investors, it is safe to assume that women are rarely the ones being pictured.
In honour of this year’s International Women’s Day, we’ve decided to put the spotlight, just like we did last year, on those who are breaking the bias and leading the cleantech industry to create a more sustainable future. Obviously, we couldn’t possibly fit all the women of the cleantech industry in one article. Nevertheless, here’s a selection of some prominent figures we wanted to shine the spotlight on this year.
Svanika Balasubramanian, Co-Founder and CEO, rePurpose Global
In addition to being the co-founder and CEO of rePurpose Global, the world’s first plastic credit platform offering financing solutions to reduce plastic waste, Svanika is a Forbes’ 30 under 30 honouree, World Economic Forum SDG champion and One Young World Lead2030. She’s a recognised voice in the industry and has given many speeches on several prominent platforms, including TEDx, the Nobel Prize Summit, the World Bank, the World Economic Forum and the UN Environment and Development Programs, to name a few.
Last year, we had the pleasure and great honour of welcoming her as one of the guest speakers of our first panel discussion on creating a more diverse cleantech industry, which you can watch on our Youtube channel.
Jade Rein, Co-founder and CPO, The Future Forest Company
Jade co-founded the Future Forest Company, an organisation dedicated to reversing climate change by sequestering carbon dioxide from the atmosphere at scale by using reforestation, biochar and enhanced weathering.
Prior to entering the cleantech industry, Jade was amongst the first employees at Entrepreneur First (EF), now the world’s leading talent investor, helping individuals build companies worth over $2 billion.
Malin Frithiofsson, President, Women in Tech Gothenbur
Malin is the CEO and President of the Board of Women in Tech Gothenburg, a woman-lead Swedish non-for-profit organisation working towards a fair and equal tech industry by strengthening women’s positions through education, community building and advocacy.
Malin has been an active member of the local tech and start-up community since 2017, leading the post-investment activities for Chalmers Ventures for three years and co-creating Alterity, a think tank giving voice to more diverse parts of the entrepreneurial community in the public space.
In addition to her roles at WITG, Malin is also the CEO of WIT’s Venture Studio, a start-up-centric tech house working to advance the Femtech industry, a program manager at StartUp Norway and an active angel investor.
In 2019 she was nominated and awarded the ‘Ecosystem Hero of The Year’ at Nordic Startup Awards – both in Sweden and in the Nordics.
Pippa Gawley, Founder and Director, Zero Carbon Capital
Pippa is the founder and current director of Zero Carbon Capital, a UK-based EIS fund investing in early-stage companies working to fix climate change through “deep science innovation”. Pippa has chaired many cleantech panel discussions and was one of the judges for the selection process of Tech Nation Net-Zero, a government-backed programme supporting UK tech companies that are helping the UK achieve its Net Zero by 2050 target.
Last year, we interviewed Pippa Gawley to get her insights on how to help cleantech companies secure investment, which you can read here.
Carmen Murer, Head Corporate Communications, Synhelion
Carmen leads all the communications activities of Synhelion, a Swiss-based company producing solar fuels to decarbonise transportation. The company’s technology uses concentrated solar heat to turn CO2 into fuels, effectively closing the carbon cycle. Recently, Synhelion was chosen by SWISS, an airline part of the Lufthansa group, to bring solar aviation fuel to the market by producing carbon-neutral kerosene.
You can learn more about Synhelion’s work and the role solar fuels play in decarbonising transportation by listening to Carmen’s interview in Brandon Bartneck’s Future of Mobility podcast.
Tatsiana Zaretskaya, Founder and CEO, Laava Tech
Tatsiana is the founder and CEO of Laava Tech, an Estonian-based company helping indoor farmers to decrease lighting energy consumption by up to 90% thanks to their AI-powered smart lamps, sensors, and IoT controllers. In addition to decreasing farmers’ operating costs and increasing crop yields, Laava Tech offers a monthly subscription model that enables farmers to get started without a large capital outlay, making their technology more accessible.
Tatsiana was listed in the Forbes under 30 in 2020 and chosen for the Forbes Technology Council last year. Tatsiana is also a mentor in the cleantech-focused Beamline Accelerator.