Producer compliance scheme Ecosurety launches second round of its Exploration Fund, offering up to £150k to individual projects tackling the negative impact of packaging, batteries or electronic waste on the environment.
Academic institutions, businesses, charities, not-for-profits and public sector organisations working to identify solutions to the negative environmental impacts of packaging, batteries or electronic waste could secure up to £150,000 in funding via the second round of an innovation fund from producer compliance scheme Ecosurety.
Launching today (8 June), The Ecosurety Exploration Fund is the only form of research and innovation finance to be offered by a UK based producer compliance scheme. It builds on the success of the first Exploration Fund launched in 2019, which received over 50 applications and went on to award four projects a total of £500k.
Recognising what it calls ‘the vital need’ to improve resource efficiency and shift to a more circular economy, the Ecosurety Exploration Fund welcomes applications from UK-based innovation and research projects working across the full lifecycle of packaging, batteries and electronics to reduce environmental impacts; from production, use and collection to end-of-life treatment and reuse.
The launch of our second Ecosurety Exploration Fund will act as a vital springboard for original research and innovation projects tackling some of the most pressing environmental issues caused by packaging, batteries and electronic waste.
Applications could therefore include technological innovations, awareness campaigns, processes and material development as well as research into system or behaviour change.
Commenting on the launch, Will Ghali, CEO of Ecosurety said, “Over the last few years, we’ve witnessed a fantastic increase in awareness of the negative impacts that packaging, batteries and waste electronics have on the environment. However, financial support for projects seeking to innovate, rethink or redesign existing systems for the better is still in woefully short supply. Without funding, solutions simply can’t flourish.
“The launch of our second Ecosurety Exploration Fund will act as a vital springboard for original research and innovation projects tackling some of the most pressing environmental issues caused by packaging, batteries and electronic waste.”
Ghali continued “As we learnt in our first Exploration Fund, it is sometimes the simplest ideas that offer the biggest potential impact. Ecosurety encourages all eligible organisations to apply to the 2021 Exploration Fund. We very much look forward to reviewing the entries.”
2020 Ecosurety Exploration Fund winners
In December 2020, Ecosurety confirmed the winners of the first round of the Exploration Fund. Four innovation and research projects were selected by the independent judges for their originality, viability and potential long-term impact.
The projects tackled a diverse range of issues including the low recyclability of post-consumer plastic film, the high level of electricals going to landfill, the low levels of recycling on urban housing estates and the need for innovative technological solutions for the lithium-ion battery recycling sector.
Simon Rathbone, Development Manager at Impact Solutions, one of the projects to be awarded finance through the first funding round said: “Thanks to the Ecosurety Exploration Fund, Impact Solutions has been able to accelerate its CellMine project, exploring innovative new recycling processes which can be used to selectively recover rare earth metals found in lithium-ion batteries so they can be used again and again.
Thanks to the Ecosurety Exploration Fund, Impact Solutions has been able to accelerate its CellMine project, exploring innovative new recycling processes which can be used to selectively recover rare earth metals found in lithium-ion batteries so they can be used again and again.
“The essential funding from Ecosurety has enabled us to employ new talent, to fast-track key research and – crucially – make vital progress towards creating a new, viable, low-cost and low-impact recycling process for lithium-ion batteries.”
Applications for the 2021 Ecosurety Exploration Fund are now being accepted via the Ecosurety website www.ecosurety.com/impact/exploration-fund, with an application deadline of Tuesday 24 August 2021.
Following the closure of the Exploration Fund, a longlist of winners will be selected by Ecosurety and then reviewed by an independent panel of judges. Winners of the 2021 Ecosurety Exploration Fund will be announced in December 2021.