The Technology Strategy Board has launched a competition for a share of £3 million awarded to companies that can provide plans for a financially viable, innovative, efficient and sustainable product or technology.
Aimed at boosting the coalition government’s green agenda, the project – dubbed the Green Genius or ‘Greenius’ competition – is open to anyone in the UK. It focuses on environmental sustainability, especially around saving water and energy, and sustainable ways of growing and providing food.
The competition opened on Monday, September 24 and has two phases, with the deadline for entries set for October 29. In the first phase, 25 companies will be awarded contracts for feasibility studies lasting for up to 13 weeks. In the second phase, all entries are judged, and a further six contracts will be awarded for the shortlisted companies to develop a prototype or detailed preview of the technology in the form of a demonstrator.
The Government stated it is on the look out for solutions that can be applied at different levels – especially ones that are easily utilised by people at community level to save energy and take control of energy preservation themselves.
Solutions that allow large-scale energy-saving technology to be used on a smaller scale are also on the Government’s wishlist.
The aim to help people to help themselves has been a consistent and infamous part of the Coalition’s ‘Big Society’ project; criticised widely by figures inside and outside government.
Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said that Britain is a “world leader” in green innovation, and backed up the statement with figures: “The green sector is worth 8 per cent of UK GDP — the largest proportion of any of the leading industrial G20 nations.”
He went on to outline how rapidly the sector is growing: “[the green sector] employs almost 940,000 people – up 2.8% from last year. Sales in the green economy are also growing at a rate of 4.7%.”
The Greenius competition is jointly funded by the Department of Energy and Climate Change, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.
To enter and to find out more, go here.