Condoleezza Rice may put global links to use as adviser to energy start-up

Condoleezza Rice is on the board of directors for a new energy company hoping to take advantage of cap-and-trade legislation.

The former secretary of state, who has been teaching political science at Stanford University since the end of the Bush administration, is taking a leading role in a start-up straight out of the university known for its technological prowess. The stealth start-up, called C3, is hoping to make carbon cap-and-trade systems for businesses, according to TechCrunch.

Rice isn't the only politically connected player on the board. C3 also counts former Secretary of Energy Spencer Abraham.

The company is the brainchild of Thomas Siebel, founder of Siebel Systems, which was bought by Cisco in 2005 for $5.7 billion. Siebel is no political slouch himself — he took a lead role in introducing vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin to California.

Rice's involvement in the company could suggest it is planning on going international, leveraging her experience and relationships on a global scale.

Little is known about the company, which is keeping much meaningful information under wraps. But according to filings with the SEC, it has secured about $26 million in private funding.

Of course, the company's future viability depends on whether Congress adopts a cap-and-trade system, which the Obama administration has been pushing for.