John Doerr, an investor who financially supported clean tech companies that collapsed 10 years ago, said that history won’t repeat itself with the current increase of financing for green energy, even as investing markets start to turn sour.
During a climate conference hosted by Climate Draft, Doerr said the current situation is not a bubble. “I prefer to think of it as a boom,” he said. “Boom periods, yes, lead to some excesses, but they produce much greater investment, full of employment and rapid innovation.”
Kleiner Perkins, the U.S. venture capital firm owned by Doerr, is among the few loyal supporters of clean startups in Silicon Valley.
Last year, companies that use technology to fight climate change raised an unprecedented $53.7 billion in private financing, according to BloombergNEF.
Those climate tech companies are now facing a stock market decline which may bring back memories of what happened a decade ago.
Doerr said that the return on investment back then was not that bad. His firm invested $1 billion that is now worth “about 3 billion today,” he said. “A positive return that we should be celebrating.”
The VC capitalist said the current market turmoil is due to the bad handling of the COVID-19 crisis and the war in Ukraine, which caused a sudden increase in oil production.
According to John Doerr, the current situation should prompt an increase rather than a decrease in funding for the green energy sector. “We should not be doubling down but tripling down on clean energy, alternative policies and technologies,” he said.
Doerr advised the audience at the event to be careful about the risks, costs, and incumbents in their industries.
This May, Doerr announced he will donate a record $1.1 billion to Stanford University to launch a school that focuses on sustainability and climate change.