Phil Plumley
5 min readJun 5


Cleantech - Committed to a Greater Los Angeles.

If one thinks of the city of Los Angeles, one tends to idealise the notion of a California lifestyle, usually pretty laid back and healthy, a mix of fancy cappuccinos and vegan food. The places to be seen, the things to be seen doing, and the familiar faces that shape and drive several industries from entertainment to innovation, from Katy Perry to Elon Musk via… name your favorite celebrity.

Los Angeles does offer some of that, however it has also been challenged for a while when it comes to all kinds of environmental issues as well as social issues.

There are many ways to address all those issues, however there has been a clear leading decision to support clean technology to heal the city. This decision is getting support from the city and large infrastructure. One of these ways of increasing the sector or sectors belonging to clean technology is to support an outstanding and determined Incubator. In this specific case, the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI).

There are sectors within Tech where measurability is a numbers game, reducing costs or increasing profit margins, preferably both.

In the case of cleantech though, there is a driving trend to also measure the impact of it within its environment besides measuring its direct dollar revenue model. It is very much a measure one would encounter within what we would refer to as impact funding.

The result of this trend allows for the exercise of contemplating the future of the planet, or the city, in a direct manner and then reverse engineer in order to find ways to achieve the big picture in time.

Traditionally, clean technology, or cleantech, is defined as 'any process, product, or service that reduces negative environmental impacts through significant energy efficiency improvements, the sustainable use of resources, or environmental protection activities'. While this definition may be a bit of a mouthful at a ‘meet and greet’, it nonetheless sets the background of the scope of work to be carried out.

The LACI, LA Cleantech Incubator, is the perfect illustration of this exercise.

While you may not have heard of them if you are not in Los Angeles, or California, I do believe that their model is going to inspire several other structures, included within other cleantech exercises, and confirm their role and purpose within the economy and the planet. Not that the economy and the planet are isolated from one…



Phil Plumley

Environmentalist / Ocean Matters podcast / SDGs