Kiwi carbon innovation shortlisted for big prize
06 Apr 2009
New Zealand charcoal technology company Carbonscape is one of five companies to make the shortlist in a global competition, the FT (Financial Times UK) Climate Change Challenge.
The challenge, sponsored by Hewlett Packard and sustainable development organisation Forum for the Future, seeks the best innovations and practical ideas to reduce carbon emissions and make the world more resilient to climate change.
The Climate Change Challenge winner will be selected by a combination of public online voting and an eminent panel of global business leaders, innovators and climate change experts, including Sir Richard Branson.
Voting was completed last week, and the contest winner will be announced this Wednesday (9 April 2009).
A US$75,000 prize will help the winners bring their service to market.
"We are thrilled to have made it onto the shortlist against global competition," Carbonscape director Vicki Buck said.
"If we manage to bring home the prize for New Zealand it will cap off a fast-paced year for Carbonscape."
The most widely discussed method to sequester carbon gases involves injecting compressed carbon dioxide into the earth’s crust.
Carbonscape is trying an alternative approach by developing a patented world-first industrial microwave charcoal technology that sucks carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, helping mitigate the impact of global warming.
The solution focuses on making charcoal, effectively and safely locking the greenhouse gases away for thousands of years.
Carbonscape has been formed by a group of directors who have impressive renewable energy and sustainable business credentials.
The Carbonscape directors are: knowledge broker and technology start-up expert, Nick Gerritsen; renewable energy developer Vicki Buck; Professor Chris Turney of the University of Exeter and author of Ice, Mud and Blood: Lessons from Climates Past; climate change entrepreneur and businessman Hamish Macfarlane; and angel investor Tim Langley.
International climate change campaigner and 2007 Australian of the Year, Tim Flannery recently joined the board.
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