Australian climate intelligence start-up granted funds to keep vulnerable Australians safer this summer

13 December 2022

Climasens, a climate intelligence start-up, has received a boost to scale its impact through Australian Red Cross and its Humanitech Lab. Humanitech is an initiative of Australian Red Cross that harnesses the power of technology for good. Through the Humanitech Lab, selected start-ups are supported through three key stages – validate, pilot and scale.

Thanks to support from founding partner the Telstra Foundation, the program will provide $500,000 in grant funding to extend Climasens’ location-based climate intelligence platform. This will help support the Australian Red Cross and municipalities nationally to monitor heat waves and their impact on vulnerable populations.

The scale funding follows the completion of a pilot project between Climasens and Australian Red Cross to utilise the platform for the Telecross REDi program, an Australian Red Cross service providing phone support to vulnerable and isolated people during extreme heat events.

Penny Harrison, Chief of Staff at Australian Red Cross, said the pilot, conducted in South Australia, focused on enabling better access to climate and population risk data to help Red Cross teams identify where residents most at risk of heatwaves to better support them through these weather events.

Ms Harrison said: “The pilot project demonstrated the power of using climate data to better inform and plan our humanitarian services for the people who need it.”

Adelide Mutinda, Humanitech’s Innovation Program Manager, said: “Climasens offers a unique, scalable opportunity to increase access to better climate information. We believe this technology has broad applications to help organisations supporting communities impacted by climate change.”

The scale project of the Humanitech Lab will support Climasens to continue to develop its heat risk service. This will support Australian Red Cross, other organisations, and municipalities across Australia to monitor heat waves and their impact on at-risk populations in real-time - better supporting climate resilience planning and investment decisions.

Joseph Glesta, Co-Founder and CEO of Climasens, said: “We are focusing on heat risk as our starting point, as we believe this is an overlooked and under-serviced area within climate risk software. We hope to change that by supporting organisations with the data they need to make the right decisions now and into the future.”

“We are thrilled to receive this funding and want to thank Australian Red Cross, Humanitech and Telstra Foundation for the support - we look forward to making genuine impact now made possible by this generous investment.”

The Humanitech Lab is a unique opportunity for start-ups to access grant funding, mentorship, network development and support to harness the opportunities provided by technological innovation to better serve humanity.

Jackie Coates, CEO Telstra Foundation, said: “Technology can help us to better understand the tangible impacts of climate change and scale solutions that enable resilience.

“When start-ups like Climasens and organisations work together to combine expertise, we create an incredible opportunity to benefit people and the planet.”

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