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Ensuring resilience in a changing climate - the impact and business case for water

Kelly Trott May 31, 2021

Water is at the heart of our ability to ensure climate resiliency for all populations across the world. Water entrepreneurship plays a vital role in harnessing talent, technology and innovative business models to address our climate challenges that disproportionately impact lower-income people of color. Support for emerging water businesses is crucial to unlock new solutions to these challenges, as well as deliver new, lasting economic opportunities for communities affected by water crises, especially as these crises have been laid bare by the events of the last year.

Join entrepreneurs in water, alongside their partners and customers for a candid and interactive dialogue exploring three unique stories around climate action and justice.

  • Varuna < > Google

    • Varuna is partnering with Google to ensure that all Black communities across the United States have access to clean water.

  • Cloud to Street < > United Nations

    • Cloud to Street is the UN’s official partner for worldwide flood mapping, helping the agency respond to climate-related disasters across the globe.

  • StormSensor < > The City of Detroit

    • StormSensor is working with the City of Detroit to ensure the city’s population is guarded from changing weather patterns and aging infrastructure.

Each case study will be followed by a reflection from a specialist water investor as to why these companies have a compelling impact and commercial case, helping the audience derive deeper insight into the realities for long-term company creation, and what they should look out for in their own assessments of water companies.

Join us to learn the lessons that these entrepreneurs have to share with the impact investing community as we bring resilience, and not just carbon mitigation, into the climate conversation.

Session Format

  • Scene Setting (10 minutes)

  • Case Discussions (30 minutes)

  • Moderated Panel Discussion with Q&A from Audience (20 minutes)



Meta Themes

  • Climate Action

  • Impact Investing

  • Social Entrepreneurship

  • Sustainable Development



Purpose and Desired Outcome

Water is a challenging sector, but one that will be fundamental to an effective response to climate change - from dealing with sea level rise in urban areas, to ensuring adequate access to drinking water and sanitation in the world’s most vulnerable populations. We want our audience to come away from the session understanding the reality of building a business in water, the nature of the problems being solved, the practical implications and requirements of getting solutions in the ground, and to see the diversity of opportunity and impact that is everywhere in this sector.


  • Allocators (Family Offices, HNW Individuals, Foundations)

  • Accelerators & Incubators

  • Service Providers

  • Academia

  • Government

  • Entrepreneurs

  • Corporate & SME

  • Intermediaries (Financial Advisers, Investment Bankers)

  • Asset Managers


  • NameTom Ferguson
  • TitleManaging Partner
  • OrganizationBurnt Island Ventures
  • StatusConfirmed
  • NameKelly Trott
  • TitleVice President, Deployment and Impact
  • OrganizationImagine H2O
  • StatusConfirmed
  • NameSeyi Fabode
  • TitleCo-Founder & CEO
  • OrganizationVaruna
  • StatusConfirmed
  • NameErin Rothman
  • TitleFounder & CEO
  • OrganizationStormSensor
  • StatusConfirmed
  • NameBessie Schwarz
  • TitleFounder & CEO
  • OrganizationCloud To Street
  • StatusConfirmed
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