AmCham Sustainability Competition announces winners tackling environmental challenges
The AmCham Sustainability Competition, an acceleration program dedicated to sustainable solutions for environmental challenges, has come to an end and the jury has designated a winner for each of the challenges addressed by the competition. CarbonCel, ECONOS, and Archnite Technologies have developed innovative prototypes that can contribute to reducing carbon footprints, measuring the impact of adopting regenerative agricultural practices, and innovatively recycling waste.
The AmCham Sustainability Competition is a program organized by the American Chamber of Commerce in Romania in partnership with Impact Hub Bucharest. From August to October 2023, the 14 startups selected in the AmCham Sustainability Competition worked intensively on developing their proposed solutions.
In addition to business workshops, participants had consultation sessions and received feedback from member companies of the American Chamber of Commerce.
The goal of the AmCham Sustainability Competition was for participating startups to develop a relevant and innovative Proof of Concept addressing the most pressing challenges in sustainability and environmental protection proposed by AmCham member companies for this program: measuring the impact of adopting regenerative agricultural practices, reducing carbon footprints, and identifying innovative solutions for waste recycling.
The jury that monitored the progress of participating startups in the program and designated the three winners consisted of representatives from the companies that proposed the challenges, AmCham Romania, and Impact Hub Bucharest.
"We are pleased that the AmCham Sustainability Competition has brought together large companies and early-stage companies concerned about a sustainable future and committed to finding the best solutions for the complex challenges in the field. Congratulations to the three winners, and we encourage all 14 startups that went through the acceleration program to continue developing their solutions," said Letiția Pupăzeanu, executive director of AmCham Romania.
Winning Solutions of AmCham Sustainability Competition 2023
- Challenge #1: Impact of Adopting Regenerative Agricultural Practices - How do we measure the impact on biodiversity following the adoption of regenerative agricultural practices?
Among the five startups enrolled to develop innovative solutions to address this challenge, CarbonCel was designated the winner. CarbonCel is an advanced end-to-end solution for carbon cultivation, supporting the implementation and monitoring of carbon projects. It proposes a new form of green agriculture aimed at sequestering carbon in the soil, which would otherwise be released as CO2 into the atmosphere. The solution is based on Agriculture 4.0 use cases, implementing devices, robots, and telematics machines, incorporating the best agricultural practices consolidated by algorithms based on real-time monitoring data.
- Challenge #2 - Reducing Carbon Footprints - How can SMEs measure and report their carbon footprint (scopes 1, 2, and 3)?
Among the six startups selected to develop solutions to address this challenge, ECONOS is the winning team. ECONOS provides carbon footprint assessment services, allowing companies to measure the amount of greenhouse gases released from their professional activities. Based on the results of the carbon footprint assessment, the startup proposes customized solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
- Challenge #3: Waste Recycling - What innovative solutions exist for waste recycling?
Archnite Technologies, the winning startup among the three participants in this category, aims to create a collection and recycling center for electronic and electrical waste (WEEE). It proposes the development of a process to recover raw materials from discarded electronic equipment, creating jobs and reducing the shortage of materials and raw materials for both Romania and the EU. By recovering significant quantities of secondary raw materials from WEEE, they achieve a high recycling-reuse rate of 85-90%.
"With 63 entries, the AmCham Sustainability Competition shows that there is a real need to create bridges between startups and the corporate sector. Participating startups appreciated the opportunity to interact directly with the companies that launched environmental challenges, discussing the challenges they faced in developing their solutions and validating the feasibility of their approach. [...] At the end of the accelerator, participating companies expressed interest in continuing collaborations with certain finalist startups," said Vlad Craioveanu, CEO and co-founder of Impact Hub Bucharest.
(Photo source: AmCham)