A PROGRAM funding and enabling 50 Cumbrian businesses to work with universities to tackle climate change aims to cut 3,850 tonnes of CO2 emissions.
Eco-I North West, a large-scale research and development initiative, helps small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) across all sectors develop low-carbon innovations in partnership with six of the North West’s leading universities – Lancaster, Central Lancashire, Cumbria, Liverpool, Liverpool John Moores and Manchester Metropolitan.
Launched in 2020, the three-year programme, which is partly funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), now works with more than 180 SMEs in the region to create new sustainable technologies, products and services to accelerate recovery. green economy. .
With one year remaining, Eco-I NW is set to help 369 businesses develop 135 innovative new solutions and remove 3,850 tonnes of CO2 from the atmosphere, supporting the UK government’s goal of achieving net zero emissions. greenhouse gases by 2050.
The success of the program and its future vision were the focus of an event at Lancaster University titled ‘Journeys to Net Zero: Collaboration Showcase’.
Eco-I NW is now looking to connect with the next wave of companies offering access to fully funded interns from a highly motivated and talented pool of students across all six universities, grant-funded postgraduate researchers counterparties for longer-term projects and capital grants. to finance prototypes, pilots and demonstration systems.
Andy Pickard, Director of Eco-I NW and the Center for Global Eco-Innovation, said: “The key message that came out of our flagship event is that Eco-I NW is doing a fantastic job of creating a melting pot of disruptive innovations, driven by conversation and collaboration.However, to achieve the rapid transition to more sustainable economies and societies in the face of the climate emergency, we need to grow our network of collaborators.
“The North West has the knowledge, people and industry to be at the global forefront in transitioning to a better economy that is also sensitive to the needs of the environment. And with over 560,000 SMEs in the region, the opportunity for this collective to create green growth is immense.