In The news

Inside Cambrian’s Water-as-a-Service Financing Model


One of the most common observations fielded by wastewater treatment startup Cambrian Innovation after sales visits with prospective customers: “If you could only install this and operate this for us, we’d be ready to go.”

Founder and CEO Matt Silver took those comments to heart. Over the past six years, he quietly hired a team of financial whizzes to figure out how to make it far simpler to buy his company’s EcoVolt technology, a system that cleans industrial wastewater and converts the recovered materials into renewable biogas.

The result: a financing model that borrows from the principles of the power purchase agreements that many corporate renewable buyers are using to invest in solar and wind power resources. Cambrian calls its financing option a water-energy purchase agreement, or WEPA, if you prefer. It launched a $30 million fund in late 2015 to invest in the idea.

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Seismic Brewing Co. Tries to Brew Beer with a Conscience

San Francisco Chronicle

Recognizing that the process of making beer is resource- and water-intensive, Jackson wanted to set a strong example of mitigating environmental impacts from the start.

“We are trying to be the best industrial brewery in terms of water conservation in the world,” Jackson said.

The centerpiece of its sustainability program is the Cambrian Innovation EcoVolt MINI, which converts about 95 percent of wastewater into potable water. Though that water can’t legally be used for brewing, there’s plenty of use for it in cleaning and in the boiler feed. Beer brewing is famously a guzzler: It typically requires seven to eight gallons of water to produce a gallon of beer. Seismic aims to get that ratio to 2:1.

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Can Other Environmental Industries Learn from Solar’s Success?

Fast Co.Exist

Solar power took off because solar panels got cheaper and better, and because state and federal governments have helped subsidize the industry. But those aren’t the only reasons. A big part of solar’s success has come from new financial models, like solar leases and power purchase agreements (PPA), which save end-users from having to buy equipment upfront.

Now other environmental industries are hoping to copy solar’s success.

Boston-based Cambrian Innovation, which makes a modular wastewater treatment system for food and beverage plants, has come up with something called a water-energy purchase agreement (WEPA). Like a solar PPA, it saves users from startup costs and effectively turns infrastructure into a service. Plant owners pay a monthly fee based on the amount of wastewater going through the system, and in return they get clean (or nearly clean) water and energy in the form of methane, which can either be burned for heat, or converted to electricity. Cambrian’s EcoVolt product, which comes in a cargo container, is basically a supercharged anaerobic digester.

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Water Treatment Financing Model Takes Page From Solar PPAs

Environmental Leader

Cambrian Innovation today said that Lagunitas Brewing Company will be the first customer to use its water-energy purchase agreement (WEPA).

Under the WEPA, which Cambrian says is a first for the industrial wastewater treatment industry, Lagunitas will use Cambrian’s EcoVolt product to treat its wastewater onsite, producing recycled water and clean energy to use at its Azusa, California brewery, which will open early next year. The brewery will pay a monthly fee and zero money down for the wastewater treatment and renewable energy generation as a service.

By reducing its utility bills and eliminating its off-site wastewater hauling and treatment costs, Cambrian estimates the WEPA will save the brewery $22.5 million over the 20-year contract.

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Craft Beer Pioneer, Lagunitas, Signs Up to Save $22.5M in Water, Wastewater, and Energy Costs with Cambrian Innovation’s WEPA

In an industry first, Lagunitas installs Cambrian’s onsite EcoVolt® solution at no upfront cost Boston, MA and Azusa, CA – December 7, 2016 – Cambrian Innovation, a commercial provider of distributed wastewater treatment and resource recovery solutions for industrial facilities, today announced that one of the nation’s fastest growing craft breweries, Lagunitas Brewing Company, will… View Article

Matthew Silver, Founder & CEO of Cambrian Innovation, to Keynote 7th International Complex Systems Design & Management Conference

Talk addresses the challenges and opportunities associated with sustainable water and energy infrastructure Boston, MA and Paris, France – December 5 – Matthew Silver, Founder and CEO of Cambrian Innovation, will keynote the upcoming international Complex Systems Design & Management (CSD&M) conference in Paris, France next week. The conference, hosted by the French Center of… View Article

Cambrian Innovation Welcomes New Senior Director of Operations

Brian Hemphill brings over two decades of operations experience to Cambrian Boston – December 1, 2016 – Cambrian Innovation, a biotechnology company solving critical resource challenges for industry, announced today that Brian Hemphill joined the team as Senior Director of Operations. Brian, who has spent over two decades leading operations in the wine industry, will… View Article