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

Thawing the Market for Commercial Energy Efficiency

Scaling the mountain of creating a large energy efficiency market for commercial buildings in the United States is a daunting task, according to a March report from Institute for Market Transformation (IMT). This report, “Energy Efficiency Finance for Commercial Buildings: Insights from Lenders,” reveals structural and outreach problems have largely frozen massive investment opportunities – close to $72 billion.

Risky Business Environments May Hold Back Climate Goals

Many promises were made at the Paris climate conference. But a January report from McKinsey & Company, “Financing Change: How to Mobilize Private Sector Financing for Sustainable Infrastructure,” shows countries without business-enabling environments may see their clean energy goals stall or be delayed. This could potentially compromise many national efforts.

The Mechanics of Measuring Success in Energy Efficiency Financing

Growing momentum for energy efficiency financing in the United States has motivated State and Local Energy Efficiency Action Network to conduct around 20 interviews with stakeholders in five states to explore what it takes to make utility-sponsored programs succeed. The research team produced a report that outlines the pitfalls and promises of a wide range of evaluation techniques.

Nuts-and-Bolts Guidance from the 2016 Investor Summit on Climate Risk

While making strong motivational statements at the 2016 Investor Summit on Climate Risk in New York City on Jan. 27, speakers also laid forth an ambitious set of targeted goals to implement the Paris climate conference’s agenda. These goals included implementing climate disclosure requirements; advocating for stable, economically meaningful carbon pricing; ceasing investment in coal; leveraging pension funds; scaling up green banks; clarifying what constitutes a green bond; and analyzing risks on an industry-by-industry basis.

Researchers Analyze the Recharged Solar Tax Credit

Just when it seemed as if the United States solar investment tax credit (ITC) was running out of energy, federal legislators charged it up for another few years last Friday. Barring other changes, by the time the credit winds down gradually, it will have put the national solar industry on a smooth glide toward a profitable future. The credit applies to both residential and commercial projects. It will taper from 30 percent through 2019 to 26 percent through 2020, 22 percent until 2022, and 10 percent thereafter.

A Tale of Two Green Bank Bills

Guess which part of the United States is so motivated to put a green bank in place that two legislative bills are competing to do the honors? It’s Massachusetts, which is considering two proposed green banks that would be very different from one another. “I’m hopeful,” said State Rep. Paul Mark (D-Peru), sponsor of House Bill 3532 . “If it doesn’t pass, we’ll file it again next session.” Mark spoke to a packed room at Western Mass Green Consortium’s Holiday Season Green Night Party on Dec. 9 in Northampton. He said he has sent a letter of support for the...

First Report on Multifamily Solar with Storage Shows Positive ROI

Until this year, no research had been published about how multifamily building owners across the United States can profitably install solar power and energy storage to make it possible for senior citizens and low-income apartment residents to survive extreme weather. Now, a new study from Clean Energy Group has revealed that these installations are promising candidates for investment in three major cities: Chicago, Washington, and New York City.

Building Climate Resilience in Native American Communities

In the Navajo Nation, electricity may be a fragile commodity as climate change intensifies. Other tribes in the United States face similar energy quandaries. The United States Department of Energy (DOE) announced on Sept. 2 that it is requesting applications to co-fund renewable energy, energy efficiency, and combined heat and power to help increase the climate resilience of indigenous communities. The available funding is estimated to total around $4-6 million. Applications are due by Dec. 10.

A Solar Social Enterprise Collects Best Practices in India

How can social enterprises finance solar power and other investments sustainably while also bringing funding up to scale? SELCO Foundation hosted two roundtable discussions in India in 2014 and 2015 to ask stakeholders how to respond to these challenges. The roundtables and a set of interviews yielded a report, “ Bridging Gaps: Investors and Social Energy Enterprise .”