To provide everyone in the world with access to reliable, affordable power, food, goods, transportation, and services without contributing to greenhouse gas emissions will not be an easy job. Developing the tools we need will require broad investment across a landscape of innovation—and no investor or group of investors can do this alone. Breakthrough Energy is committed to encouraging a wide network of public and private capital to work together to solve the problem.
We’ve divided the landscape into Grand Challenges in five fields that are the biggest contributors to global greenhouse gas emissions. Within each of these Grand Challenges we’ve identified several Technical Quests, different areas where research and investment might bring us closer to an emission-free future. To achieve each of these Technical Quests there are many different investment pathways.
Some of these investments will result in ideas that move forward and some won’t—developing some may even make work on others unnecessary. The Breakthrough Energy Coalition believes, though, that all of them are avenues worth investigating to get the world to a zero-emissions future. Nobody knows yet what the energy mix of tomorrow is, so investors need to explore all possible paths.
To provide reliable and affordable power without contributing to climate change we need to address emissions in five key areas: electricity, transportation, agriculture, manufacturing, and buildings. We have mapped out a landscape of innovation that we believe will help humanity meet those challenges.
Five grand challenges inform 55 technical quests.
Public investment in scientific research leads to innovations.
New companies and products bring innovations to market. Certain investments require flexible capital, like Breakthrough Energy Ventures.
We believe that our Grand Challenges are the five questions we need to answer to get to a future powered by clean energy.
How can we deliver reliable, affordable zero-carbon electricity to the world?
How can we get around our communities and the world without emitting carbon?
How can we feed the planet without contributing to climate change?
How can we make everything we use without emitting greenhouse gases?
How can we eliminate emissions from our homes, offices, hospitals, and schools?