Meet the five finalists who are competing for €500,000 and Postcode Lottery Green Challenge title

19 August 2014

LONDON: A 21st century solution for recycling festival tents and an innovative cleantech idea for island electricity generation are among the five finalists of the Postcode Lottery Green Challenge.

The international competition which is now in its eight year champions green entrepreneurs, offering a €500,000 (~US$680,000) cash prize for the best low carbon business idea. In addition, up to two runners-up will have the opportunity to take home €200,000 (~US$266,000) to facilitate the expansion of their sustainability template.

“People will not stop consuming. Instead, we must offer consumers a green alternative to bring climate change to a halt. The Postcode Lottery Green Challenge is about stimulating the development of these alternatives”, Sir Richard Branson, a strong supporter of the Postcode Lottery Green Challenge summarized.

This year’s finalists were selected from a total of 324 low carbon proposals submitted by applicants from 57 different countries. The shortlist is predominantly European with projects from the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and France all being recognized, however, Vietnam business Fargreen also made the final cut.

Fargreen works with local farmers to reduce the emissions released in the rice farming sector, while the French entry, Turbosail, developed a dynamic wave propulsion technology which delivers real savings in fuel consumption.

Bluerise, one of the Dutch initiatives, also relates to maritime activity but while the former focuses on fuel savings for sea vessels, the latter harnesses temperature shifts in the ocean to generate electricity for island dwellings.

The Netherlands is strongly represented in the prestigious final five, with One Nights Tent - a company which produces recyclable tents - also shortlisted. UK company Bio-bean which transforms waste from coffee bean grounds into two Advances Biofuel products, rounds off the list of successful candidates.

The five green entrepreneurs, Diego Acevedo, Devin Malone, Arthur Kay, Pierre-Yves Cousteau and Trang Tran will have a final opportunity to pitch their ideas at a special ceremony in the Netherlands on September 11.

A jury of green growth specialists, led by Ellen MacArthur, the British ex-solo swimmer, will then have the unenviable task of picking just one project for the €500,000 development prize.

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By Alana Ryan

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