Give Back Tahoe: Tahoe Fund launches new environmental venture trust | SierraSun.com

Give Back Tahoe: Tahoe Fund launches new environmental venture trust

Special to the Sun
The Environmental Venture Trust's first project will pilot a new technique to remove aquatic invasive weeds from Lake Tahoe with UV light instead of hand removal.
Courtesy photo |

Taking a page from the playbook of venture capitalists in the Bay Area, the Tahoe Fund has created an Environmental Venture Trust to seed early stage environmental improvement projects in Lake Tahoe with philanthropic capital.

Unlike traditional venture capital, the return on investment for the trust will be purely environmental and not financial. The Environmental Venture Trust will help kick start projects to drive innovation in solving environmental challenges in Tahoe.

This is a new initiative for the nonprofit that is focused on raising private funds for environmental improvement projects that help restore lake clarity, improve outdoor recreation, and inspire greater stewardship of Lake Tahoe.

“We see a lot of great projects sit on the sidelines because they can’t find the initial funding to get things started,” said Art Chapman, chair of the Tahoe Fund. “With this innovative approach to philanthropy, we can give life to a lot of great projects that will have a tremendous impact on the long-term health of Lake Tahoe.”

An example of an Environmental Venture Trust project is a $5,000 grant for a pilot project to test the use of UV light technology to control the spread of aquatic invasive weeds. If successful, this technology could be deployed across Lake Tahoe and in other parts of the world with fresh water lakes.

The Tahoe Fund recently announced its 2016 Signature Projects. They include construction of a new overlook at Taylor Creek to help with the issue of bear selfies, trail reconstruction at the Lighthouse Trail along the Rubicon Trail, and a new section of the Lake Tahoe Bikeway that will connect Dollar Point to Carnelian Bay.

Donors interested in contributing to the Environmental Venture Trust or one of the Signature Projects can email info@tahoefund.org or call Amy Berry, CEO at 775-338-1668.