POLITICS

White House Rallies Investors To Commit $4 Billion To Clean Energy

06/16/2015 09:31 am ET | Updated Jun 18, 2015
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WASHINGTON, June 16 (Reuters) - The White House has pushed foundations, institutional investors and philanthropies to commit more than $4 billion to clean energy projects and help fight climate change, doubling a goal set in February, officials said.

The administration issued a call to action early in the year asking them to make commitments on clean energy innovation, and "we've seen a really overwhelming response," White House senior adviser Brian Deese told reporters in a conference call late on Monday.

To help facilitate the commitments, the administration increased access to federal information and provided technical assistance, Deese said. However, the extent to which the White House's call to action actually increased commitments they may have been considering anyway was unclear.

In an example of these commitments, institutional investors at the University of California's office of the chief investment officer, the New Zealand Superannuation Fund, the Alaska Permanent Fund, and the Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association-College Retirement Equities Fund (TIAA-CREF) mobilized more than $1 billion for clean energy innovations. That effort will help identify and screen companies and projects for investments that help fight climate change, the White House said.

In addition, the Energy Department said it would launch a Clean Energy Impact Investment Center to help speed other financing for clean energy.

"The idea is to make the department's resources ... including of course our 17 national laboratories ... more readily available to the public, including the mission driven investors," Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz told reporters. (Reporting by Timothy Gardner. Editing by Andre Grenon)

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