Nurturing the Future Generation of Climate Entrepreneurs
HONG KONG SAR - Media OutReach - 7 September 2023 - Climate Action Recognition Scheme (CARS) is delighted to celebrate the remarkable success of its flagship program since its inception in 2020. Initiated by the Hong Kong SDG Hub of Wofoo Social Enterprises, co-organised by the Environment and Ecology Bureau, and supported by The Hongkong Bank Foundation, CARS is a pioneering climate action youth entrepreneurship program in Hong Kong, and has been instrumental in cultivating the next generation of Climate Entrepreneurs, raising public awareness about climate change, and mobilising the community towards meaningful climate action. Despite the formidable challenges posed by the pandemic over the past three years, the team worked hard and succeeded in organising this important program, which demonstrates their strong determination and spirit. As the selection process for CARS 2022-2023 enters its final stage, the organisers are thrilled to announce on 6 Sep 2023 the five winning teams for this year's program.
As the effects of climate change grow ever more pronounced and critical, the need of the hour is more than just being aware of the problem and passive observation is no longer an option. Aligned with the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the Hong Kong SDG Hub's flagship program CARS aims to foster public awareness and provides entrepreneurial funding and expansion support for climate-related innovative ideas and startups committed to addressing climate change. Over the past 3 years, CARS has successfully nurtured over 200 climate-focused innovators, received over 120 team applications and invested in 15 outstanding startup ideas.
Industry-wide Collaboration to Cultivate Climate Entrepreneurs: Fostering Sustainable Solutions
With the generous support of The Hongkong Bank Foundation in cultivating climate entrepreneurs and their exceptional support to this endeavour, as well as the shared belief of Wofoo Social Enterprises in the power of collaboration, CARS has created a platform that nurtures and empowers young entrepreneurs through actualising their innovative solutions. By promoting the principles of CO-SHARE, CO-CREATE and CO-WORK, CARS facilitates the pooling of resources from different sectors, enhances connections and expanding the number of beneficiaries to addressing the increasing climate challenges.
The program has provided holistic training, mentorship, networking opportunities, fund and resources, in the Idea Stage League and the Scale-Up Stage League, to equip participants with the necessary skills and knowledge to transform their ideas into impactful ventures, contributing to a sustainable future.
Raising Public Awareness on Climate Crisis
The dire consequences of climate change, including extreme weather events, ice fragmentation in the Antarctic, prolonged wildfire seasons, coral reef bleaching, and the expansion of disease-carrying mosquitoes, highlight the urgent need to address the climate crisis caused by global warming. Human activities, particularly the burning of fossil fuels and deforestation, are identified as the main contributors to this crisis. The need for immediate action to mitigate the impacts and avoid the worst consequences of climate change is evident.
CARS has played a pivotal role in highlighting the urgency of climate issues in Hong Kong and beyond. Through various initiatives, including public engagement events, campaigns, workshops, public pitching and voting, exhibitions, etc., CARS has conveyed the importance of climate action to the broader community. It creates opportunities for public engagement, fosters a sense of responsibility and inspires individuals to take action towards a sustainable future.
Announcing the Five Winning Teams of this Year as the Hub for Environmental Entrepreneurship
Over the years, CARS has recognised outstanding teams with inspiring ideas and solutions to combat climate change. Their projects range from renewable energy solutions and sustainable agriculture to eco-friendly technologies and circular economy models.
The Grand Final showcased the most promising ideas and projects from the participating teams, illustrating their commitment to climate action and sustainability. During the highly anticipated Award Ceremony, a distinguished panel of judges evaluated the finalists' presentations and selected the winning teams for 2022-23. These teams have demonstrated exceptional creativity, vision, and dedication towards sustainable and impactful climate solutions.
The Winners for CARS 2022-23 are as follows:
Idea Stage Winner
Project: Vim Vitae GreenBio Decarbonisation Solutions
Project: Topological Smart Oyster Reef Restoration Initiative
Scale-Up Stage Winner
The Furry Project
Project: The Furry Project
Meat the Next
Project: Meat the Next Tiger Nut Enzymatic Technology
In response to the challenges posed by the recent years, Wofoo Social Enterprises, organiser of CARS has implemented various adaptations, in every effort, to ensure continued engagement and participation in the program.
"We take pride in spearheading the Hong Kong SDG Hub as a catalyst for sustainable development," said Dr Joseph Lee, GBS, OStJ, JP, Chairman of Wofoo Social Enterprises. " In the face of various challenges, we remain committed to raising awareness and driving action towards achieving the SDGs. We extend our heartfelt thanks to our partners and supporters from various fields, different sectors in the society who have contributed to this collaborative platform, encouraging innovative ideas and creating shared values that connect economic progress with social development, making positive impact on our environment and society."
William Chiu, Secretary, Advisory Committee, The Hongkong Bank Foundation, said, "Sustainability has become an important agenda of the community. We all recognise what we are doing here together is crucial to the future of Hong Kong as well as our planet. More climate action is urgently needed. We look forward to seeing their great ideas being turned into feasible and commercially viable actions. The Foundation is committed to working with our NGO partners and other stakeholders to support Hong Kong's transition to net zero."
The Hong Kong SDG Hub will continue to inspire and engage stakeholders through its pioneering initiatives. They look forward to creating a safe and harmonious environment for the next generation. For more information of the Hong Kong SDG Hub and its ongoing efforts, please visit the websites of Hong Kong SDG Hub at https://sdghub.hk/.
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