Working collaboratively, we've supported gigaton-scale emissions reductions and improved access to clean cooling.
In 2016, leading climate foundations collaborated ahead of the Montreal Protocol meeting in Kigali, Rwanda, and pledged more than $50 million to create the largest-ever fund of its kind for action on efficient, climate-friendly cooling. The following spring, the Kigali Cooling Efficiency Program (K-CEP) was born, under the management of a new secretariat assembled by and housed within the ClimateWorks Foundation.
Under the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol, 197 countries committed to cut hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) production and consumption by more than 80% by midcentury. Our team was charged with strategically programming interventions for the funds under a directive to advance appliance efficiency reforms alongside efforts to support the implementation of the new global HFC phase down under the Kigali Amendment.
In 2021, we refreshed our strategy and updated our name to reflect our revised scope of work. Now, as the Clean Cooling Collaborative, we will continue to build on our past efforts to place cooling on the global agenda by catalyzing organizations, institutions, companies, and governments to bring efficient, climate-friendly cooling policies, financing, and technology solutions to the world.
The Clean Cooling Collaborative team, under the governance of its Funder Advisory Committee, sets the strategic framework of the program, oversees investment in cooling interventions, manages programmatic partnerships and reporting, and tracks progress
against our results framework, with the aim to help funders and partners maximize the climate and equity benefits of efficient, climate-friendly cooling.
Mirka della Cava
Mirka della Cava has returned to ClimateWorks Foundation, now serving as the Head of Policies, Standards and Programs for Clean Cooling Collaborative, managing a diverse grantee portfolio. Formerly, Mirka was a Senior Program Manager for the Colorado Energy Office, leading the state’s Energy Performance Contracting program. She also supported development of the state’s energy efficiency legislation, testifying on behalf of the New Appliance Energy and Water Efficiency Standards bill which was signed into law in May 2019. Mirka has been involved, both globally and domestically, in energy efficiency, climate change, and energy policy her entire career with senior positions at ClimateWorks Foundation, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and the US EPA. Most recently, Mirka was honored to receive the Colorado Governor’s 2019 Public Service Recognition award. Mirka holds a Masters of International Affairs degree in Environmental Policy from Columbia University and a BA in Political Science from Duke University.
Noah Horowitz is Director of the ClimateWorks Cooling Program. Before joining ClimateWorks, Noah’s work as a Senior Scientist with Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and the Director of the Center for Energy Efficiency Standards aimed to make buildings and the equipment inside them more energy efficient.
Noah has worked on the state, federal and international levels and his areas of expertise include residential lighting and appliances, consumer electronics, and energy-saving “cool” roofs. Noah co-authored model regulations issued by the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP) for use by developing countries for air conditioners and refrigeration equipment. He also served as the World-wide Manager of Environmental Programs for the Quaker Oats Company.
Noah holds a BS in chemical engineering from Carnegie Mellon University and a MS in environmental engineering from the Illinois Institute of Technology.
Xiaoyi Jin joined ClimateWorks in 2018 and serves as a Senior Associate for Clean Cooling Collaborative. Prior to ClimateWorks, Xiaoyi was a Program Associate at The Asia Foundation where she supported the Foundation’s annual plan and budget process and researched on international development aids to Advanced Middle-Income Countries (AMICs) in Asia. Xiaoyi holds a Master of Development Practice degree from UC Berkeley’s College of Natural Resources.
Shilpa Patel comes to ClimateWorks Foundation with a development banking, project finance, and climate policy background. Prior to joining ClimateWorks, she was an independent consultant for a number of organizations on climate finance and was Principal Advisor to the Finance Center at the World Resources Institute. Shilpa started her career in the World Bank, where she worked on private sector development across a number of sectors, regions, and economies in transition, including agriculture in the Maghreb. She headed the International Finance Corporation’s work on climate strategy and metrics, including understanding the climate change impacts of its activities, as well as the impacts of climate change on private business and IFC’s operations. She has also managed IFC’s investments in petrochemicals, as well as health and education, and run an experimental incubator for environmental business. She helped launch IFC’s first green bond and worked with institutional investors and other stakeholders to define green bond criteria and standards. Shilpa holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, and has taught courses on Project Finance at Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business.
Axum Teferra is Associate Director of Clean Cooling Collaborative at the ClimateWorks Foundation. She brings over a decade of experience in climate and energy policy, strategic planning, and program implementation.
Prior to joining ClimateWorks, Axum spent several years overseeing efficiency, renewable energy and electrification programs in state and regional government. Most recently, she was on the climate team at the Bay Area Air Quality Management District, where she launched the agency’s first building-sector decarbonization strategy. Axum previously worked as Clean Energy Planner at the Metropolitan Area Planning Council of Greater Boston, producing energy-reduction plans and advising cities on various sustainability solutions, including clean heating and cooling technologies. She also served as an Industry and Innovation Support Consultant at the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, where she facilitated international cleantech partnerships.
She holds a BS in Environmental Conservation from Texas Tech University and an MA in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning from Tufts University.
Tao Wang is a China Strategist at ClimateWorks Foundation, where he advises the organization and its partners on climate and energy philanthropy in China. Dr. Wang is also a guest lecturer at Tsinghua University.
Prior to joining ClimateWorks, Dr. Wang was assistant dean of the Yicai Research Institute; a scholar in the energy and climate program of Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy; senior program manager at World Wildlife Fund’s China program; and a researcher at the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research.
Dr. Wang holds a PhD in Environmental Economics from the University of York and a BA in Environmental Science from Fudan University. He is author of articles in journals such as Climate Policy, Energy Policy, and Science of the Total Environment, and is a regular contributor to the New York Times, Financial Times, the Diplomat, People’s Daily, China Daily, and other publications.
Catherine Witherspoon advises ClimateWorks on the linkages between air quality management, short lived climate pollutants, and climate mitigation. Previously, she served as the program director for ClimateWorks’ non-CO₂ fast action campaign. She has 26 years of regulatory, legislative, and management experience in the air quality field. Ms. Witherspoon started as a student assistant at the California Air Resources Board in 1981, and eventually rose to Executive Officer (2003-2007). In that role, she managed a staff of 1,100 and an annual budget of $350 million. Ms. Witherspoon was directly involved in the drafting of the California Clean Air Act and California’s landmark Greenhouse Gas Solutions Act. In the mid-1990s, she left state government and served briefly as an Expert Consultant to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (Region 9), Legislative Director for the South Coast Air Quality Management District, and sole proprietor of her own consulting firm, before returning to CARB in 1999 as Senior Policy Advisor to the then-Chairman Dr. Alan Lloyd. Ms. Witherspoon has a BA in Politics from the University of California at Santa Cruz.