Hey guys! Thanks for tuning in! A few months ago, we launched our startup Terra2 to enter the ground floors of fighting climate change. Since then, we have raised almost $75,000 to fund our lean 8-team operation. At Terra2, we believe people want to fight climate change—they just don’t have the opportunity to easily participate.
· The United Nations 2019 climate report states that the world only has until 2030 to prevent catastrophic consequences from climate change. It’s almost on the verge of becoming impossible.
· Technological improvements in the last few years have made solar cheaper than natural gas, coal, wind, etc. ( https://www.lazard.com/media/451086/lazards-levelized-cost-of-energy-version-130-vf.pdf)
· While investments into renewable energy are increasing, it’s not enough. We need to get more solar farms into the ground ASAP.
· Our goal is to open renewable energy to a new source of investment: you, the average investor! By accelerating the flow of capital into this space, we can build more solar farms faster and save the world before it’s too late.
Our solution is an online platform that lets everyday people quickly invest into solar farms, earn a return on investment (the profit from selling energy to power grids), and monitor carbon emissions reductions over time. We’re launching a beta platform later this year! Check out our website at www.terra2.com and if you like what you see, please join the waitlist. We want to share our site visits and form submissions with investors so we can show them that this is a project with real demand worth funding. We’d also love any feedback, either positive or negative, so we can make improvements to our ideas as quickly as possible.
Special thanks to the mods over at r/climateoffensive for their help on bringing awareness to our solution and the support!
Edit: Additional Proof https://twitter.com/Terra2Official/status/1216136476091723776
Edit1: Ouch, gg to our first reddit AMA. But is that all ya'll got? (all on the same team, btw...)- David
Edit2: Wow we were seriously confused where all these random downvotes to people's comments came from....
Edit3: Moved edit notes to bottom and updated broken link to Lazard report
Okay, so my understanding (which is likely wrong) is that this is basically a socially conscious crowd-sourced investment. Those exist in other verticals. Conceptually, it kinda works. But I can already invest in a solar ETF or an equity. And anyone can do that. And those are much lower risk than this pseudo-angel investment. So in order for it to work, there has to exist the possibility of a much higher return than those competing investment vehicles.
Can you model the returns for us, assuming a $1,000 investment?
This is a good question and it shows that you know your stuff. That said, what we are providing, as you said, exists in other verticals but not in renewables.
Right now, I shouldn’t say any specific number until offering circulars are made available. That will have financial information that you need to model the asset before you make any investments. This document would be involved with the SEC qualification. But this will come later, and vary project by project. It’ll obviously have to be professionally audited and checked before we make a project’s financials public to you.
So you’re essentially just a middle man for investments? Raising awareness for your own for profit investing company?
Pretty much! And the way we see it, this isn’t a bad thing!
If we had the money ourselves to fund the construction and maintenance of hundreds solar farms, that’s what we’d be doing because we believe solar energy to be one of the best ways to move forward into a renewable future. Other people share that belief, too, and we just want to provide a way to pool all the small amounts that people can afford/are willing to invest together to work towards a common goal.
And yes, we’re for-profit, but that’s because we think that being for-profit can attract a wider audience of investors and customers (not just philanthropists). It’s the unfortunate truth that money is the biggest motivator in our society right now, and we’re aiming to align financial incentives of big players with the interests of everyone on the earth.
What do you offer that a regular solar ETF wouldn't?
Great question! A regular solar ETF let’s you invest in different solar companies. We let you directly invest into a solar project or solar farm itself. So, the asset you are investing into is fundamentally different.
Additionally, ETFs don’t let you pick. We give individual investment decisions to you so you can handpick which solar projects you want to invest into and build your own solar portfolio that way.
Lastly, we will be tracking your emissions reductions over time. You will be able to check it real-time on your phone, on the website, etc.
Hope that highlights the key differences! Please let us know if you have more questions!
So, your proof is an attempt to drive traffic to your website. That isn't proof.
Where is the team? We need a photo of real people, not a link to drive traffic to your website. Young entrepenuers leaving corporate jobs should know this.
Also, it's a give and take situation. People are asking questions. You are not answering them. The only 'response' has been to the bot saying to be wary of proof.
Edit: You certainly changed everything in the introduction than when I first saw it! Much better introduction. Glad to see you are answering questions now and that there is a proof of real people behind the website. Also, you fixed the link. Good job.
Hello! Please check out our updated post! Our website also has a link to our team if you want to check that we are real people. We will be providing responses to all of the questions.
Is this an AMA or a marketing opportunity pulling on peoples concern for climate change? The technology to go 100% renewable has existed for 10 years. Technology isn't the barrier, governments are. It sounds like you are finding a way to profit from it without actually fighting the problem.
You’re right that we’ve had the technology to go 100% renewable! Unfortunately, we’ve seen that technological availability alone doesn’t incentivize adoption of that technology—at least, not quickly enough. That’s why we want to take part in that adoption ourselves and enable likeminded individuals to be part of that change.
The cost of solar energy has dropped significantly in the past few years, making it more attractive for commercialization. Being a for-profit company allows us to take advantage of that development by marketing solar energy as a prudent economic decision as well as an ethical one.
Firstly, love your enthusiasm for the viability of PV solar, and evangelising it as an investment asset. Great stuff.
I’ve had a quick poke around on your website and looked at the Q&A so far, and I have a number of questions.
To be frank, I’m not sure what the value proposition is for the average investor here. Massive portfolios of renewable energy assets, a large proportion of which are solar farms, already exist worldwide through large funds like Greencoat, Blackrock, DIF, Gresham and Octopus Energy, just to name a few. I understand that your appeal is in “direct investment” in solar farms by individuals, but these types of asset portfolios work best by leveraging economies of scale and standardised asset management, and it doesn’t look like you can currently offer that.
From your website, you have stated that “Money from investors is pooled together to build or finance a solar farm in cooperation with established solar industry partners.” So it sounds like you’re talking about investment in greenfield projects. If you’re seeking development funding for a greenfield project, regardless of whether it’s all equity funding through your platform or includes a debt package, each project is going to need to be bankable (especially if the asset is going to have any resale value), which raises a number of questions...
Will these solar farms rely on revenue from private wire PPAs or will they be connected to the grid and rely on wholesale sales? Or at this stage is it anything goes?
What is your strategy for participating in capacity auctions? There is a good deal of uncertainty around feed in tariffs in parts of the USA at the moment. which grid operators/regions have been identified as good targets?
When you refer to “established solar industry partners”, who is your EPC contractor? Who is your O&M contractor going to be for these assets once built? Who is going to manage these assets and supervise your O&M contractor?
If investors are investing “directly” via your platform, what will they actually own? Shares in a project holdco?
You state that you “eventually plan to allow our users to direct and customize the solar projects.” How will this be achieved with the strict planning requirements for project development and grid connection for solar PV projects?
Further into the asset life of these solar farms, will these assets be able to be transferred/sold to large portfolio operators and out of the hands of your platform and its investors?
How will decisions such as whether or not asset life extension or re-energisation is desirable or appropriate, be made?
How will provisions for de-commissioning costs, etc., impact the distributions made to investors? Will provisions be made over the life of the assets from offtake revenue?
Hello! Wow lots of great questions here. Here's a first pass at answers:
Regarding your question of how we compare to the funds you mentioned (Greencoat, Blackrock, etc.), one of our primary value propositions is allowing unaccredited investors to be able to invest as well. Another value proposition is usability so people can easily invest, track their investments, and see other transparency related metrics such as solar farm performance on a unified mobile and web platform. We believe the combination of these two things will significantly expand participation in solar asset investing whereas these funds are relatively obscure and hard to use.
We totally agree with the fact that economies of scale are hugely beneficial. As a startup we simply aren't going to be able to offer economies of scale in our portfolios since we clearly won't have as many assets as the funds mentioned above. We are definitely seeking to scale soon after the launching our first couple projects and to leverage similar economies of scale. We are currently and in the future will continue to invest in being a data driven company to support our scaling efforts.
We're going for both greenfield and brownfield. Our investment strategies will be 100% equity or at least have a much higher equity to debt ratio than with traditional financing of these projects.
"Will these solar farms rely on revenue from private wire PPAs or will they be connected to the grid and rely on wholesale sales? Or at this stage is it anything goes?"
We'll offer both for investors with different risk profiles. ERCOT offers higher risk but could offer higher returns. We can also enter into private wire PPAs which we are exploring with our partner Graphene Core. We'll choose our strategies on a project by project basis.
"What is your strategy for participating in capacity auctions? There is a good deal of uncertainty around feed in tariffs in parts of the USA at the moment. which grid operators/regions have been identified as good targets?"
ERCOT, which is the primary unregulated grid we're investigating, does not have
"When you refer to “established solar industry partners”, who is your EPC contractor? Who is your O&M contractor going to be for these assets once built? Who is going to manage these assets and supervise your O&M contractor?"
We will be subcontracting EPC contractors. We'll be making decisions on who we contract as we get closer to construction. We will be thoroughly vetting our partners. We're also members of the American SEAS and have other advisors in the solar space who we can reach out to during this discovery process. Whether or not we want to hire an O&M contractor or do it in house is a decision we'll make as we learn more about our project. We'll be relying on the experience of our advisor, Michael Shore, who has years of experience in this field.
"If investors are investing “directly” via your platform, what will they actually own? Shares in a project holdco?"
While the legal entities we use to manage our offerings may change in the future for different offerings, investors will be buying shares in a project co.
"You state that you “eventually plan to allow our users to direct and customize the solar projects.” How will this be achieved with the strict planning requirements for project development and grid connection for solar PV projects?"
I think we may have miscommunicated what we meant in that phrase. By "direct" we meant that investors would be able to choose the projects they invest in. By "customize" we meant that we would be exploring additional option plays i.e. ways to use our solar farms as land as opposed to customizing the actual solar panels and other equipment used by the solar farm. For example, some solar farms lease their land to cow farmers to allow cows to graze. Thanks for pointing this out and we'll definitely update that on the website!
"Further into the asset life of these solar farms, will these assets be able to be transferred/sold to large portfolio operators and out of the hands of your platform and its investors?"
Yes that is a possibility but we have not made any concrete decisions on this front.
"How will decisions such as whether or not asset life extension or re-energisation is desirable or appropriate, be made?"
We expect asset life extension is very possible with solar farms, since it's primarily a matter of replacing solar panels. We'll conduct more detailed financial modeling on a per project basis to determine whether this is financially advisable.
"How will provisions for de-commissioning costs, etc., impact the distributions made to investors? Will provisions be made over the life of the assets from offtake revenue?"
Since how we handle decommissioning costs really depends on the specific project details, we'll provide more specific details on how these costs are handled in the offering circulars for specific projects.
Have you ever actually developed a solar farm? How are you going to post credit for interconnects? What markets will you focus in?
Great question. Yes, several of our team members are very experienced in energy, and one of them actually worked for a major solar company and was a part of many solar utility-scale projects! The markets that we are currently focused on is ERCOT and CAISO, which are the grids for Texas and California respectively. The reasoning here is because it is deregulated, so we don't have to be an utility to sell electricity there.
That said, for interconnects, letter of credits for interconnects are actually for a very short-term but they can be a large amount, depending on the interconnection costs and strategy. That said, posting letters of credits for an interconnection position is not a major obstacle for us. It is commonly done in the business.
Are you fighting profit, or hoping to profit from your efforts? It’s not clear from the wording of to it question.
More importantly, what is the premise of your efforts?
Hello! Thanks for the question. Well, both. To be very specific, we want to fight against the profits of big Oil and we are hoping that we and everyone that participates using this solution can profit as well. We don't think making money is necessarily a bad thing. To be frank, we believe that profit can be a good thing if you can attract people towards renewable investments. Being for-profit allows both us and our users to receive profits from their solar investments, just as with an investment platform!
Why only a decade?
Something implemented in 9.5 years would be useless then? Or 9.75 years?
What will you do when the decade is over?
What will you do if nothing changes?
Hi, this is a great question! Check out the recently released United Nations report on the emissions gap! (3 minute read). It gives you a quick run-down on what's going on in the world right now. It really boils down to this: We have only this decade to limit our global warming to a reasonable level that we can address. It's not to say that our Earth will turn into a fireball within the next ten years. It's the fact that we are currently so much higher from where our global emissions need to be, and in order to reduce emissions, it takes time. The fossil fuel industry took 150+ years to build. The United Nations stated that we need to cut emissions down by half within this decade if we want to limit our global warming to 1.5 degrees. We will keep fighting against climate change even if we do not meet the UN's proposed emissions goals because every additional 0.1 degree of temperature increase is increasingly more catastrophic to our world.
Are you on reddit to gain attention/funding to/for your "company"? I can't understand why you would be here for any other reason... Most of us know about climate change. Why do you as a company need to work on software for climate change? What would it be used for? You couldn't write code while holding full time jobs? So you quit to be entrepreneurial? This makes no sense to me.
Hi, honestly, yes we want the attention for our for-profit company. We aren’t asking for any money. We want to bring awareness to an actual solution we are developing in order to garner public interests. We want make sure to develop a product that our users and everyone fees comfortable using because we do believe that this can be a great avenue for people to participate in a cleaner future.
If you would like more information on what we are exactly offering, please do check out our website (www.terraii.com) Our tech team has been a lot of work into putting content there that will answer many of your questions. Essentially, it will allow you or anyone who knows and cares about climate change to invest in renewable generation directly. We are a for-profit because we need to cover our expenses, and also because we want to return the dividends and earnings we make back to our users. We don’t think making a profit makes things wrong - if we are making money from something that is good for the world, we should be happy with that.
Utility scale solar farm owner operator here. Lots of really good opinions in here and I have to agree that financing solar projects is pretty complicated. Tax equity, yield forecasts, construction loans, long term loans, etc. Selfishly, I would love to have a bunch of average people investing with a click rather than the months of due diligence with these stiff financiers. But I think this is risky for the uneducated average investor. That being said, with more risk comes more reward... I hope. How much more profitable will your product be than a solar etf?
Hey great to hear! One of our goals is definitely to make it easier to get financing for solar farms. We will of course be conducting our own due diligence of course and applying our own internal data-driven models to evaluate performance.
Regarding our expected profitability, unfortunately it's difficult for us to say. While we have internal estimates of project returns we can't give specific numbers until we have more information on the specific projects we will include in our offering. All this information and more will definitely be provided before we ask anyone to make an investment!
Why are you so focused on solar farms? A solar farm can’t replace base load fossils fuel from a practical standpoint.
Are you willing to support a diverse portfolio of clean energies? Wind, hydro, nuclear?
Would also like to reinforce the fact that we are still at a very early stage and makes more sense to focus our efforts for now. While we are not completely eliminating the possibility of pursuing additional avenues of clean energy, we want to avoid spreading ourselves too thin with our minimal resources -Jason
What sorts of expertise would you want to add to your team to give you the best chance of success?
For reference I am a glass scientist with over a decade of project management experience in a corporate environment. Is there anything someone like I could do to move the needle?!!
Thanks for your question Dominick! While we are all doing as much of our own research and due diligence as we can, we could always benefit from more expertise, experience and knowledge from subject matter experts in scientific fields related to our challenge. Having as much knowledge about the problem will help us make better decisions towards achieving a solution
As for what you could do to move the needle, other than using our platform when it's ready, we plan on providing frequent updates in our blog about topics like current trends environmental efforts, new studies, or the direction of our platform. We encourage anyone with expertise, experience, or even curiosity to leave comments/feedback so we can continue to have open discussions about a renewable future.
What kind of climate control machine are you building to stop climate change?
Solar farms! Solar farms generate clean electricity, pushing our dirtier fossil fuel power generators directly. It’s a necessary step to decarbonization. Currently, fossil fuel plants represent a third of our emissions globally. If we can replace as much as we can with solar or other renewable assets, we will be halfway through our goals for the decade.
Need DevOps/Software Engineers?
Yes! Please email me directly - email@example.com
Once we get to seed investment round, we should definitely talk. Then we can finally afford to pay my team who has been doing all of this for free (actually, pretty much everyone has put in most of the pre-seed and it represents a well sized portion of the investments in). Tech (coding and optimization) and hire to significantly help our world transition to a renewable future faster. This is just our solution I guess, but I am sure there’s plenty that tech can do to improve the pace of transition. If you can’t wait for us to get seed, I encourage you to go explore what can be done (and what can’t do you don’t pursue). Feel free to shoot any ideas or ask questions-
I am curious, is the only a decade left claim accurate? This has been said many times in the past
Hey! We truly think so. The United Nations officially released saying that we have only this decade to lower our emissions by 7.6% a year (which is a lot...) from 2020-2030 to limit our temperature increase to the 1.5 degrees. What they said was that at 1.5 degrees, we will lose 70% of our coral reefs and half of our habitats for insects. They are all vital to our food chain. We don’t think in 2030 the Earth will be a fireball. We are worried about major disruptions to the food supply, droughts, hunger, more intense and frequent weather storms, and the ever more bullet train towards catastrophe. At 2 degrees, 100% of coral reefs will be lost. Each additional 0.1 temperature increase is catastrophic. We are currently at 1.13 degrees of 1.5.
Why do we only have a decade left?
Please check out the UN climate report for 2020-2030! It’s the description as a link! It’s a few minute read so we encourage you to take a look to answer your question.
How do y'all feel about nuclear energy?
While nuclear energy provides a lot more energy than solar, the high cost for production and legal barriers make it a much harder solution to implement. Hopefully in the future nuclear will become a more viable option.
Here is a question.
If we can pipeline oil, why can we not do so with water?
I'm an environmental science major.
And I think that we would be able to take excess flood water from the midwest and pump it to the west coast for California. They are in a man made draught, as you may know.
And seeing as the midwest has excess water most years, it would make sense.
What would ideally make this work is by having pump stations throughout to keep the water flowing. And I also know that by pumping water up high, then lettng gravity do the work, you can have a roughly 80% recapture of the energy used to do so. And if this was done the length of the pipeline, I imagine not only could we move and pump the water, but also produce jobs and electricity in the process.
Do you think something like that would be plausible?
That’s interesting!! Aqueducts exist in California but I am not sure if they come from Midwest. I think it’s really interesting that you pointed out that the kinetic energy, or release of potential, when the water goes downhill can be capture. Yes, I am sure there is a way to capture that electricity, and it can be scale as long as it is commercially viable to attract the resources to scale. It sounds like a cool idea!
Good evening dear Ladies and Gentlemans!
While this is not 100% your target area, why is everyone nowadays hopping onto all these superficially environmental-friendly things while everyone seems to forget about the background / manufacturing process from most of those things? How sustainable are solar panels in reality, what about manufacturing / recycling? While the idea behind all these things is fine and innovative, is it really reliable in the future and made for the masses we actually need?
It is sorta misleading, starting from electric cars and their batteries to solar cells, etc. - wouldn't it be better to invest more time and money into research which should be promoted instead of selling half-arsed, ill-conceived products which could do more harm than good? Yes, of course things have to be funded, but is this the right way we are heading right now?
Yes, obviously things need to change, but I guess to reach our climate goals and "save our planet", each of us needs to fundamentally rethink our doing. Not only every other normal individual, but also all leading personalites and companies - obviously driven by capitalism.
Solar panels have recently become very advanced! They last for few decades at the minimum, if not longer. Warranties from manufacturers these days show 25-35 years!
Now, as to the components of panels itself, sure there are materials that are derived from fossil fuels. Well, that’s because we live in a world that is dependent on fossil fuels for every aspect of manufacturing to transportation. Those are separately problems that need to be addressed as well, and there are a lot of people working on that!
Do you have any actual research demonstrating that doing this as a profit-driven enterprise is more effective than operating as a non-profit and/out government agency?
What evidence to you present to prove that you people aren't just trying to exploit the climate crisis to increase your own personal wealth?
Honestly, you sound like a bunch of capitalist assholes.
Hi! Thank you for the comment. Just to start, just because we are a for-profit doesn’t mean we are against non-profits. We all serve different functions in the overall mission.
That said, a lot of thought went into our personal decision to enter as a for-profit vs non-profit. We decided that a for-profit is better for our specific purposes because 1) investments are driven by profit and 2) making a profit should be a good thing when you decide to invest in renewables.
That’s really the key here. We are capitalists for sure. We are American. We are pro-innovation. But by driving profit and investments through renewables, we take it away from big Oil! Making a profit isn’t a bad thing - we are people too and we need to feed ourselves.
That said, I am currently homeless! I’ve been staying over at my friends this week as our team currently works on this. I already left my job and used all my money (or the little of what was left in it haha) to help launch this company. If increasing our personal wealth is our top priority, this probably wouldn’t be the surest path to that haha. But, hopefully, it does turn into something that people can use!
What would your relationship be with solar developers? You’re providing funding for their projects instead of a bank?
We can invest in their projects, acquire outright, or fund new developments with them and provide financing in the place of a bank! We will conduct internal due diligence using proprietary data models to value any acquisitions and investments.
Have you helped fund your local parks/forestry/fisheries departments lately?
You know, I haven’t, but I am trying to persuade an sustainable agriculture business to use solar energy (which could save them money). Hopefully it works, fingers crossed 🤞 David
Going ALL in? How many of you are vegan?
Actually, I’m failing at that part. It’s my Achilles Hill, I grew up with a diet very much accustomed with meat and carbs. Trying to think of going vegan but it’s hard. A friend recently said that if you have already 5 vegan dishes that you like and know how to cook it, it’s easier to transition.
If you have any ideas, do share! Am curious - but won’t be easy.
Hey guys... Hope you can answer a very tough question.
Electricity accounts for about 28% of global emissions (IEA 2020). Demand is projected to increase, even under scenarios where aggressive renewables are included. Developing countries, for the main example, are intensifying demand for single family homes, lighting, internet, air conditioning, cars, gadgets, and basic goods and services that the west currently enjoys. Demand for energy, infrastructure, goods, and services is increasing by all measures. Young people in developing countries want - and will get - western lifestyles. Country leaders want western lifestyles. Donors and MDBs are dumping billions annually to assist countries develop into the western style. Economic growth (including health, education, and mobility of people) is fundamentally intertwined with intensive emissions. Demand is just not going down in any scenario. Seriously. There are zero reasonable, realistic scenarios where demand decreases.
And that's just 30% of emissions. The other 70% is from food, industry, vehicles, land use, etc. Demand for these is also projected to increase, again even under best realistic scenarios. As domestic demand rises, demand across these sectors will increase exponentially.
So, brass tacks guys. Do you think you are well informed on the impact your work could actually achieve? Impact from your work is equivalent to a tear drop in the rain. Second, are in this for the money?
Would love to hear how you view impact and how you'll address hypocrisy in your plans.
Hey! This is a good question. Power generation is the easiest third of the problem of emissions, but as you said, there are many more categories of sources, namely industrials, and transportation.
Industrials is very difficult to tackle and there isn’t really a commercially viable solution there. In 2019, Bill Gates did make public that he and his solar startup made incredible progress in using machine learning with solar to raise temperatures at a target to very high temperatures, capable of heating cement and steel for industrial processes. It still is in its infancy and very difficult. We are cross fingers that this will be commercialized soon because industrials feels like the last frontier of major emissions.
There’s also transportation. Big fan of electric cars. However, electric charges charge with electricity, and the majority of electricity still gets generated by fossil fuels. Transportation sector is primed for change by electric vehicles, and it’s already happening.
Now, the category we are tackling is power or electricity generation. I like to think about it as the first third of the emissions problem. It’s also the easiest third to tackle. And we are already behind on this.
Global demand due to population growth and especially due to emerging countries tries is a big reason why we continue to see global increases. A lot of things are difficult to tackle, so for us, we are tackling the easiest third of the emissions problem to do what we can. A lot of smart people are working on many other solutions and let’s all cross our fingers that we can all make it in time.
Do you believe the larger threat to climate is corporation, through factories, unoptimal company policy, etc; or the average person through vehicles, sinks running, lights on, etc?
It's hard to say what the single largest threat to the climate is because it depends on how we weigh what's more of a threat. We definitely think power usage which is tied to green house gas emissions and global warming is a big problem!
The world only has until 2030 😂. Yeah, OK. Fear monger much?
Please check the UN report! It’s a 1-3 minute read and info graphic!
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How do you take into account that many climate "catastrophe" predictions have been incorrect in the past? I believe that climate change is real and occurring, but there have been many predictions in the past that have been incorrect, such as the one below.
Climate catastrophe predictions in the past may have been incorrect, but temperatures are definitely rising. With the fire in Australia, I think it is in our best interest to take better care of our planet. Whatever action we can take to help slow down climate change is an action worth taking.
Is solar energy the best renewable technology to invest in right now?
Hi, others have also asked this question and it seems to be a common one! It is structured as a for-profit because we are for profit! That said, our offering documents will dileanate how the cash will flow in a transparent manner, and you will be able to understand all of this before making an investment decision. We want to be for-profit because solar investments do generate income, and we want everyone to take a part in it. For that reason, we would have to structure as a for-profit. Our users will be equity investors in the project, so similarly, this allows our users to make profit as well.
Have you considered that the global warming has yet to drown a country (as promised time and time again) but the increased CO2 content has contributed to massive vegetation growth within previously arid and barren regions and better food production in many poorer countries in the moderate climates?
How about the fact that 1930-1970 has seen a steady decline in average temperature and the same effect has been observed since the early 2000s?
Hopefully nobody doubts the expertise of William Harper of Princeton?
Let me summarize how the key issues appear to me, a working scientist with a better background than most in the physics of climate. CO2 really is a greenhouse gas and other things being equal, adding the gas to the atmosphere by burning coal, oil, and natural gas will modestly increase the surface temperature of the earth. Other things being equal, doubling the CO2 concentration, from our current 390 ppm to 780 ppm will directly cause about 1 degree Celsius in warming. At the current rate of CO2 increase in the atmosphere—about 2 ppm per year—it would take about 195 years to achieve this doubling. The combination of a slightly warmer earth and more CO2 will greatly increase the production of food, wood, fiber, and other products by green plants, so the increase will be good for the planet, and will easily outweigh any negative effects. Supposed calamities like the accelerated rise of sea level, ocean acidification, more extreme climate, tropical diseases near the poles, and so on are greatly exaggerated
Our users also profit!
What plans do you have for capturing greenhouse gases and sequestering them out of the atmosphere? Planting trees won't be enough. I was thinking a great place to sequester would be abandoned mine shafts.
Honestly, we don’t personally have plans for sequestering. For us, we are attacking the fossil fuel plants that emit the majority of greenhouse emissions in order to prevent more greenhouse gases from entering our atmosphere.
Carbon sequestration is important, has been proven, but it’s too expensive. While the technology exists, it’s a net negative investment so it’s difficult to raise money to scale carbon sequestration to a level that we need it to be. Hopefully, someone very smart can fix this problem!
Planting trees is not enough, agreed. But it helps. There are startups focused on planting new trees and trees do sequester carbon out of the atmosphere over time. It’s just not fast enough
The vast majority of carbon emissions come from the third world, and china alone producing more than double the emissions of the USA. Will your platform also do overseas investments?
Great point! We'd definitely love to invest overseas but we chose to start in the States for now which we believe is a great target considering it's the second largest producer of emissions after China! We are definitely looking to expand overseas as soon as we can.
But dont you have to wait until the regulators give you permission to build these new plants? Genrally old plants will have to reduce operations or close down so new ones can come on line.
Great point. I think (correct me if I am wrong) that you are referring to the regulatory requirements surrounding interconnection or connecting to the grid. It’s a known process but it can be complicated! We would definitely hire industry professionals to provide diligence for this. Additionally, we can purchase assets with an interconnection queue or these regulatory hurdles already addressed, and ready to construct projects to maneuver around this.
What is something I can do that is relatively easy (and relatively cheap)?
One small thing that I actually do everyday before i go to bed is switch off the power strip that connects a bunch of my stuff like PC, TV, desk lamp, etc to reduce on standby electricity usage. It's a small act in the grand scheme of things, but every little impact helps!
Have you considered becoming a certified B Corp?
We have! While we intentionally chose to be a C Corp we have definitely considering becoming a B corp. Even though we're a C Corp we'll treat investor transparency as if we were a B corp.
Before starting this, have any of you had any direct experience investing in solar farms?
Yup! Our CEO has extensive experience with financial modeling for large scale solar projects for the purpose of making investment decisions from his previous job.
What kind of customer discovery have you guys done on this? From a personal standpoint, yes I want to participate in fighting against climate change but am not willing to put at risk dollars behind it.
Have you found a specific subset of people who are willing to do so? A $75k raise tells me there isn’t a ton of discovery and interest behind this idea- am I wrong? Truly curious and not trying to be a jerk.
We launched in November of 2019! $75K was enough for us to do what we needed to do, and we didn’t want to over-raise on our pre-seed round for no reason. For now, we raise as we go to cover costs until we get to the point we can raise seed money!
Yes! We’ve been getting both positive and negative feedback, so we will make sure to incorporate it for our users. The biggest thing seems to be concern about lack of details on the process. We will plan to update our website with a more detailed process overview at a future point.
Isn’t this another publicity stand funded by elite to social cleansing the world by selling venomous electric cars?
We hope not!
How can the average Joe help with the climate change crisis?
How can the average Joe help with the climate change crisis?
Hi, we were wondering about that too, which led to Terra2. According to the gap analysis here https://www.unenvironment.org/interactive/emissions-gap-report/2019/ we want to limit temperature increase to 1.5C within the next decade. Part of Terra2's goal is to allow the average Joe to pitch in and fund the development of solar farms. The more alternatives we can find to fossil fuels, the better. This way we can all work together to reach the goal set by the UN.
As of now, raising environmental awareness is good. In the future we hope that Terra2 can be a solution towards creating more solar farms and other renewable solutions.
Will you consider the amount of pollution China and India are producing? Or is this another virtue signalling attempt?
We do consider it. Climate change is a global problem. Actually, China and India have made large investments towards renewables, with China currently leading the world in renewables! That said, still a lot of work to be done from everyone.
We care about emissions from other countries because climate change affects all of us globally.
What if your efforts fall flat and over time the climate still changes? Do investors get their money back?
Haha we're sure hope this doesn't happen! But investors will still have made returns from their investment so yes they'd get their money back and then some!
How can I help?
*Edit: Why am I getting downvoted?
I love this question. You can help us out by doing two things!
1) Check out our website! (www.terraii.com). We have a product page, a video as well as a blog post with additional information for you.
2) Sign up on our website! We have an interest form that takes a few seconds of your time. This helps our team understand that what we are working on is valuable, and that there are people who are interested in using it. This market traction in the form of views and signups are necessary for us to be able to develop this platform to the final product! Thank you so much for your support here!
Additionally, there are many ways to help out the world, starting from sharing awareness of the climate change issues we face this decade, or volunteering at local climate groups.
Ask: What will you do if/when you find out that climate change has been exaggerated or that carbon in the atmosphere does not have the projected impacts and it may actually good for the long term viability and sustainability of the Earth because of its positive effects on vegetation and is no longer to be treated as a threat?
Well if what you said is true, it’ll be a damn relief but the data and laws of science would all have to break down for what you said to happen!
How do I join you guys? What are the requirements?
Hey! In which way? The team? The platform?
For the team, email firstname.lastname@example.org with an introduction and resume if you have it!
For the platform, we aren’t accepting money right now but please feel free to sign up on our website to receive updates as our team progresses ahead. Thank you!!
Is this platform only available for the USA, or people in other country can also invest?
Hi, we are still developing and haven’t release our platform. At first, it’ll just be for the US, but our goal is to enter non-US countries subsequently. If you have the time, sign up! Then we will be able to notify you as we expand. But first steps first, we will have to exemplify this platform in US first and then we will expand to allow more people to invest!
Do you think we’ll be able to get fusion to work to generate electricity large scale?
Hope so. The problem with fusion is that there isn’t currently yet a commercially viable way to make fusion release energy at scale. A lot of smart people are working on this, but it may take some time. So, for now, it’s not a working solution but as R&D continues to pour into fusion, we hope this can change.
Hey! How important are designer roles within your startup?
Hey guys how do you survive without having an income?
Hey! Most of team members hold full time jobs. This supports us expenses a ton until we get to the point to raise money that we can use to pay for full time overhead. Right now, we just raised the pre-seed to fund development. We do hope to have incomes in the near future so we can transition to full time to work on this soon.
I have a PhD in mechanical engineering, how can I help?
Do you support nuclear energy?
Generally yes! There are still some problems we need to address such as where we store the radioactive waste. However, the biggest problem is that the permitting process for nuclear has been increasingly difficult, making an investment in nuclear unviable from a commercial perspective.
We have also had a few disasters associated and so we also see the dangers to that. Nuclear fusion, however, is a much more stable form of nuclear energy but it isn’t yet developed to a point of commercial scaling. Crossing fingers that we will see that in the near future!
How will your platform help when it's just another vehicle promoting consumerism? You realize that climate change is caused by unbridled capitalism, right? You're just feeding the same machine causing climate change.
Technological advancements in the last few years have made solar energy one of the cheapest energy sources! Capitalism clearly has contributed to climate change in the past and is continuing to do so—money is a powerful motivator, and oftentimes what makes people money harms others. Now that solar energy is viable as an economically attractive option, we’re hoping to harness that motivator for a good cause instead and accelerate our transition into a renewable future.