Kat Friedrich

Kat Friedrich
News Editor at Clean Energy Finance Forum and Conservation Finance Network

A former mechanical engineer with graduate training in journalism and environmental studies, Kat Friedrich is a self-employed news editor with expertise in energy, sustainability and technology.

In collaboration with graduate students and staff, Kat is expanding the articles, infographics and videos published by Clean Energy Finance Forum and Conservation Finance Network. These sites are experimenting with the latest innovations in online media and environmental communication. Both sites are using a "solutions journalism" approach to producing cutting-edge, pragmatic business news.

Yale University brought Clean Energy Finance Forum on board after Kat built its initial iteration for a small national NGO, Clean Energy Finance Center. The website has been growing since 2012.

Kat has also edited two magazines: BuildingEnergy and Renewable Energy World Magazine. Her reporting has appeared in Midwest Energy News, Scientific American, Earth Island Journal, and many other publications. She is a local co-organizer of Online News Association Western New England and the former organizer of NetSquared Boston.

Kat holds a master’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Nelson Institute. Her thesis analyzed media framing of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge energy resources debate.

For close to two years, Kat worked for American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy on website strategy, technical writing, and environmental psychology research.

For four years, Kat was a writer and editor at the Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching and Learning, a national initiative advancing diversity-friendly teaching techniques in science, technology, engineering and mathematics at colleges and universities.

As an engineer, Kat constructed parts for hybrid race cars before hybrid cars were on the market. She also built and tested HVAC systems to cool power electronics that were connected to utility power grids.

Authored Articles
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The Struggle to Expand Clean Energy in 2016

As the solar industry grows and energy efficiency works to do the same, 2016 brought a significant expansion of breaking news for us to cover and curate. The articles below are our top stories showing the many new and surprising developments we saw last year.

Two Global Climate Finance Awards Synergize

Two international awards for climate finance are starting to work together. On Dec. 5, the Global Innovation Lab for Climate Finance announced its three winners. In the same email, Finance for Resilience (FiRe) named its four finalists. FiRe will narrow down the list to two winners at the 2017 Bloomberg New Energy Finance conference in April. 125 project developers applied for one or both competitions.

Clean Energy Jobs Eclipse Coal Jobs in the Midwest

Even without reliably supportive policies that help clean energy grow, Midwestern coal-producing states already have many more jobs from solar and wind power than from coal production. There is also a promising economic opportunity to repurpose assembly lines in Indiana, Michigan and Ohio to manufacture renewable energy equipment.

Blockchain Technology Could Streamline Distributed Generation

In Australia, Europe, and North America, energy companies are beginning to consider using blockchain technology for distributed generation payments between small solar installations. A blockchain is a shared digital decentralized ledger that records transactions across a peer-to-peer network. Blockchain technology involves strong encryption.

New York Debates How to Finance Low-Income Solar

In most of the United States, low-to-moderate-income (LMI) communities have little to no voice about how solar energy can bring jobs and economic stability. New York is an exception. The state held an extended dialogue on this subject this year through the CDG Low-Income Collaborative. Although the New York Public Service Commission (NYPSC) dismissed the committee’s recommendations, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) decided to put some of them in place.

California Supports Solar Roofs for Multifamily Affordable Housing

Climate resilience pays dividends in financial stability and public health. California has passed legislation, AB 693, that will provide up to $1 billion for solar roofs for multifamily affordable housing. A May report by Clean Energy Group, “Closing the California Clean Energy Divide: Reducing Electric Bills in Affordable Multifamily Rental Housing with Solar+Storage,” found these retrofits can zero out some properties’ net electricity bills.

Wells Fargo Funds Minority-Owned Green Businesses in North Carolina

After decades of underinvestment, African-American farmers and small business owners in North Carolina will now receive green enterprise loans from Natural Capital Investment Fund. The award of $1.6 million, announced on May 3, is part of a much larger program by Wells Fargo that seeks to fill part of the huge void in bank financing of minority-owned businesses.