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From White House Advisor to Climate Tech Innovator: Tech for Good with Manik Sura CEO of Therma

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The Scale Up Show

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Join Ryan as he talks to Manik Sura, CEO of Therma, about how he turned his passion for sustainability into a thriving tech startup using AI. Manik gives behind-the-scenes advice on building a VC-backed company from scratch along with his top lessons learned and how AI is altering not just the business world but the planet.

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  • Cooling equipment drives nearly 10% of global warming through energy use, food waste from spoilage, and the release of ultra-potent greenhouse gases. The problem is growing rapidly as developing countries adopt more cooling.
  • Manik’s start-up Therma uses sensors, data science, and controls to dynamically manage the operation of AC units to save businesses money while cutting emissions.
  • After early struggles trying to digitize food safety logs for users, Manik realized he had to fully automate temperature monitoring instead of just moving paper forms to mobile devices. Adoption and growth took off.
  • To thrive as an entrepreneur, Manik recommends believing you can shape the future through sheer persistence, maintaining a higher purpose beyond personal gain, and surrounding yourself with great people.
  • AI promises big climate benefits by optimizing energy systems, predicting weather and usage patterns, monitoring illegal deforestation, improving recycling, and more.


"If food waste were a country, it would be like the fourth largest emitter."

"You can actually create the future...If you stick with something and try and work on it, often good things happen."

"Do it for some reason beyond yourself...It makes it worthwhile to wake up."

"Every technology stack being used to tackle climate change can be augmented with AI in one or multiple ways."

Ryan Staley

Founder and CEO

Whale Boss 

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