Each issue of the newsletter is written by M.B.A. students from elite schools: Stanford, Harvard, Yale, Columbia and the University of California, Berkeley.Kolman, Kossoff and Liu receive pitches. They vet the material with outside experts. They also write. They’re keen to help their readers distinguish between what actually makes a difference in bringing down emissions and what counts as greenwashing.
How did they get drawn into this project?
Liu grew up in Southern California. Daughter of Taiwanese immigrants, she saw on trips to China and Taiwan how farmland turned to skyscraper land. She became intrigued by land use changes, and then, gradually, by the links between climate change and sustainable food systems. She majored in international relations at the University of California, Irvine.
Kolman, who grew up in Savannah, Ga., majored in physics and political science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. “I spent my time in undergrad searching for a career where I could use my analytical skills to improve society,” he told me. A trip to South Africa, which has dealt with successive droughts exacerbated by climate change, brought home “the impacts of water insecurity.”
He considered working in public policy but those plans changed after the 2016 election. He worked for a consulting firm that helped its clients buy solar and wind energy for their operations. Then, business school.
Kossoff, who calls herself the “most recent climate convert,” grew up mostly in southwest Florida and studied business and chemistry at Emory University. There was no “Aha!” moment for her. “It was more of a slow realization that something was very, very wrong as I saw the places I loved most from my childhood changing,” she said.
All three graduate this June but intend to keep The Gigaton going.
Kossoff will return to work at Bain, the consulting firm where she worked before and which sponsored her graduate studies at Stanford. Kolman and Liu are looking for gigs in climate investing.
While theirs is aimed at fellow M.B.A. students, they say, other sites target a broader range of skills, including job boards by Breakthrough Ventures and the Climate Pledge Fund, both venture firms that list openings at the companies they invest in, as well as a platform simply called Climate Change Jobs.