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  • Writer's picturePeter Yolles

Echo River Capital Update – APRIL 2024

Updated: May 9

New Blog: H20 to H2, Assessing Hydrogen's Relationship with Water

Jack Schaufler, Echo River’s spring MBA intern, takes us on a deep dive into the intersection of hydrogen and water, and why hydrogen just might be an important and investable water-tech opportunity. Clean, green hydrogen is expected to grow from near zero to 125-585 million tons by 2050, according to Mckinsey, with water being the most likely feedstock, putting even more stress on limited supplies in water-stressed areas. Is green hydrogen a water-efficient substitute for fossil fuels?


Portfolio News

Aclarity made Time’s Top Greentech companies list for 2024!  Here.

Epic Cleantec presented at the inaugural Onsite Water Reuse Summit at US EPA headquarters in Washington, D.C. Amazing to see Epic move from policy advocacy in the City of San Francisco to national policymaking! Shout out to Paula Kehoe of San\ Francisco Public Utilities Commission for innovating policy at both levels and partnering with Epic CEO Aaron Tartakovksy on the National Blue Ribbon Commission for Onsite Reuse.

Hohonu announced a 20-sensor, $75k/year deployment with the City of Annapolis and University of Maryland. The joint press release is here. 

Imagine H2O hosted its 2024 cohort of 10 new breakout companies for its accelerator that includes two new portfolio companies: CREW Carbon and Open Hydro. Congratulations! Both companies are focused on decarbonizing the water cycle. CREW captures and sequesters carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide from wastewater, comprising 3% of global GHG emissions. Open Hydro is targeting one gigaton of CO2e emitted annually from aquatic ecosystems, focusing initially on methane emissions from reservoirs. Combined, these companies are combating more emissions than all aviation emissions globally. It was great to be “home” at Imagine H2O again, marking 15 years since my company WaterSmart Software participated in the inaugural cohort. Congrats to Scott Bryan, Tamin Pechet, Chris Morrison, Nidhi Menon, Nimesh Modak and the entire team!


Industry News

On April 10, 2024, US EPA announced the final National Primary Drinking Water Regulation (NPDWR) for six PFAS.  Read here. More detail from portco Aclarity: “While there are still disagreements over the cost of compliance with the PFAS rules, it is clear the government expects the cost to be covered via settlements with manufacturers and funding from various appropriations. The recent moves will serve to spur innovation and development as there are gaps in testing, disposal and destruction capacity. Aclarity will use these recent changes to its advantage and lean into the mitigation of long-term risk.”  


What I'm Watching and Reading

World Premiere of “Our Blue World – A Water Odyssey.” Creators of the Netflix Document Brave Blue World have released this groundbreaking new documentary. “Our Blue World explores humanity’s profound relationship with water and reveals how human agency and rebalance the planet’s water systems.” 

The Third Door describes college student Alex Banayan’s journey to interviewing the world’s most successful people, from Bill Gates to Steven Spielberg to Lady Gaga. If you have a high school or college graduate in your circle, this book could be their guide to fashioning their own career path in our current hustle culture. It’s a quick read for an evening or a plane flight.


Coming Soon: Where I’ll be presenting

Yale Innovation Summit – Climate Track: May 29-30th in New Haven

American Water Works Association – ACE24 – Innovation Hub: June 13th in Anaheim In person

Open Hydro founders Maria Ubierna and Cristina Diez visited San Francisco to participate in Imagine H2O week. Wonderful to spend time talking and wandering Fort Mason including a visit to this statue by Italian artist Benny Bufano. The statue represents the peaceful blending of cultures – perfect for two Europeans returning to California to launch a global carbon mitigation company.


Peter Yolles

General Partner


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