9 youth-led innovations that are protecting the planet

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  • Confronting the climate crisis calls for innovation and collective action by young leaders.
  • Therefore, Global Shapers were asked to develop a challenge that would help young innovators adapt their solutions to the climate crisis.
  • Nine young climate innovators have been chosen to receive support to scale up their impact.

Around the world, young people are preparing to gather in Stockholm+50, focused on nature and resilience, ahead of COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. In preparation for these global summits, it is essential that young people have a common language and mission, and that their collective action and innovation is supported and accelerated.

In this context, members of the Global Shaper Community (CGC) and The Climate Reality Project (CRP) has designed a challenge to find and champion young leaders around the world working to drive local climate action and raise climate ambition. This is how the Youth Climate Action Challenge was born.

The Challenge, hosted on the World Economic Forum’s Innovation Platform Uplinkreceived 108 submissions that were carefully evaluated by a community of experts to select nine UpLink Featured Innovators.

Over the next few months, the nine featured innovators will have the opportunity to learn from each other and expand their impact through one-on-one mentorship with The Young Global Leaders Forum (YGL), the GSC and the CRP Climate Leaders. Featured innovators will be supported by the Forum and CRP through promotion of their work and presentations to established ecopreneurs.

Here are the featured innovators enabling climate action around the world through creativity, optimism, social justice and hard work:

  • BluPower (India) is a Micro Hydro solution providing reliable and resilient hydropower that is compact and easy to install in rivers and canal sites currently unsuitable for electrification. Their mission is to produce 8000 GW of energy per year by 2030 to impact 20 million lives in grid-deficient communities around the world.
  • Chloride-free foundation (Brazil) is an international non-profit organization concerned with soil carbon sequestration and seeking to expand beyond Brazil and the United States. The Foundation aims to create a prosperous and equitable future for everyone and the environment by educating farmers about the importance of soil biodiversity and promoting sustainable and chloride-free farming practices.
  • Ecological smart agriculture (ecological warriors) (Ghana) is a digital agriculture solution that provides farmers with climate-smart farming practices in local languages. This scalable technology solution targets farmers in the Fodoa community who are losing their rice crops due to climate change and who need to learn new climate-smart rice farming methods.
  • HamsaRecycling (Azerbaijan) is a social start-up that uses textile and plastic waste to create shoes and clothes. They aim to create products designed specifically for people with disabilities from recycled materials. As people with disabilities are underrepresented in the fashion industry, HamsaRecycling contributes to sustainability and inclusion.
  • MAA’VA™ (United States of America) is developing a sustainable proprietary building material that sequesters carbon, turning plastic and non-plastic waste into eco-concrete that can be used for conventional construction and 3D printing. By optimizing 3D printing technology, MAA’VA can build low-cost ecological housing in one day with eco-concrete for 1/10th of the construction cost and half of the construction waste.
  • mudatuga (Portugal) is a start-up creating home and community composting solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and avoid disposal of organic waste in landfills. Its flagship product is Compostuga, an eco-friendly Bokashi bin made from cork residue that allows consumers to compost everything at home. Mudatuga addresses the growing problem of urban waste in Portugal while aiming to become a catalyst for circular waste management in the Iberian Peninsula.
  • Nossa Horta (Brazil) is a grassroots movement in the city of Rio de Janeiro that promotes urban agriculture through community gardens primarily in low-income neighborhoods. Each garden responds to the needs of the local community and teaches adults and children about climate change, medicinal plants, unconventional foods.
  • Subjee Cooler (India) is a portable zero-energy cooling chamber that keeps vegetables fresh for five days without energy input. The Subjee-Cooler has been instrumental in improving farmers’ incomes and reducing food waste throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • tree place (Philippines) is an evolving model of urban reforestation supported by the Philippine Department of Environment and Natural Resources. The project fights climate change one square meter at a time through collective and individual actions to green cities. Tree Square’s goal is to achieve 10,000 square meters of urban tree coverage in 100 cities in the Philippines, with potential to expand to other Southeast Asian countries.


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