As smoke from Canadian large swathes of the East Coast, millions of people have found themselves trapped inside, gazing out on orange skies and hazy cityscapes. The air quality index — which is usually ignored — has suddenly become an object of fascination and source of small talk.
It’s all remarkably similar to what happened on the West Coast three years ago, when skies there turned a sinister hue and people rushed to seal their windows and buy air purifiers. If the past is prologue, then investors should prepare themselves for a tidal wave of climate tech startups next year.
There’s no doubt that the 2020 fire season on the West Coast had a profound impact on a number of founders. Several have told TechCrunch+ that the apocalyptically orange skies of that summer played a large role into quit their previous jobs and start companies focused on addressing the climate crisis.