The California Institute of Technology has announced $30 million in gifts toward the creation of a new institute that will be dedicated to sustainability.
Longtime Los Angeles residents Stewart and Lynda Resnick made a gift of $20 million for the new facility, which will be called the Resnick Sustainability Institute at Caltech, while the Gordon and Betty Moore Matching Program provided an additional $10 million. A second phase of the campaign, which hopes to raise $90 million for the institute, is planned for 2010.
By leveraging earlier grants from the Moore Foundation and projects by Caltech researchers already under way, the institute hopes to provide a path to economic sustainability, with a focus on innovative science and engineering developments that may one day help solve global energy and climate challenges.
Stewart Resnick is chair of Roll International Corporation, a private holding company he founded in 1962. Both Resnicks sit on the executive board of the UCLA Medical Sciences Department, and Lynda Resnick is vice chair of the board of trustees for the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, to which she and her husband pledged $55 million in 2008.
"We are passionately committed to finding alternative and sustainable energy solutions," the couple said in a statement. "We're making this investment because Caltech is truly one of America's greatest research universities, and we are confident that this new institute will develop the breakthrough technologies we need to address the daunting challenges of energy security, rapidly accelerating energy demand, and climate change."