The private sector has agreed to invest more than $4 billion as part of an Obama administration effort to increase funding in energy sources that could help fight climate change, the White House said Tuesday.

The figure is more than double what the administration had set out to leverage through several new programs and investment tools it announced in February. The White House wants to work more closely with foundations, philanthropies, institutional investors and businesses to jump-start clean energy technology that the administration is leaning on to cut greenhouse gas emissions and meet its climate change goals.

"Long-term investors — such as foundations, family office investors and institutional investors — can play a catalytic role in accelerating the transition to a low-carbon economy. Philanthropists can help fund clean energy innovation at the earliest stages, where bold new ideas are emerging from our labs, universities, and startups, while investors can scale up the most promising of these innovations," the White House said.

The administration announced a series of executive actions: Increasing access to federal clean energy research; boosting transparency on federal clean energy spending; and establishing more favorable Treasury Department terms for foundations by allowing them to fund clean energy projects through "mission-driven" and program-related investments, the latter of which allows foundations to recycle funds after repayment or return of equity.

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