UNDP Awards Sh1mn to Innovative Ideas Tackling Climate Change

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has awarded Sh1 million seed capital to three startups to kickstart their ideas that are addressing climate change challenges.

The Mombasa youth-based tech startups will walk away with over Sh300,000 seed capital each after emerging top during the Blue Economy Innovation and Investment Summit.

The summit was co-organized by Sote Hub and Coast-based hubs that include Swahili Box, Tech Bridge, and Close the Gap, as part of the ongoing Countrywide Innovations Week by the Countrywide Innovation Hubs Association.

Among the winning ideas include Seavive, a device that helps fishermen reduce time spent fishing by helping them easily locate spots with huge numbers of fish. The device floats on water and scans the area and shares the information in real-time on the fishermen’s mobile phone.

Tamu Chicks was also awarded for making organic feeds & fertilizers from Fish Waste and bycatch. They reutilize the disregarded fish waste from fishermen to help tap the untargeted waste to make fish feeds, chicken feeds, poultry feeds & pet feeds. These feeds & fertilizers are sold to farmers.

Waste-to-energy startup Flemibriqs was also among the winners. The startup specializes in the collection and conversion of waste to solid fuels used for heating applications.

They mostly convert coconut shells and husks to briquettes that they sell to homesteads, institutions, and other factories.

Speaking during the summit, Sote Hub Co-founder and Director David Ogiga said technology in the modern world is an enabler and also an engine that fuels development.

“If we are able to employ technology then it will be able to help us enable our businesses to scale up, run efficiently and be able to offer services the best way to customers. We have so many opportunities for business in the blue economy, tech will enable us to collaborate and be more efficient,” he said.

He added that incorporating technology into the blue economy sector will also go a long way in promoting value addition along the value chain.

“Technology enhances value addition and when you enhance value addition, it means that you are creating a balance between efficiency and productivity and increasing jobs,” he added.

Slovak Aid funded the summit while UNDP funded the seed capital for the top three innovators.

Slovakia Ambassador to Kenya Katarina Zuffa Leligdonova said that innovations and new solutions are crucial while addressing the climate crisis or any other challenge a nation might be facing.

“I have been inspired because the topic “green and blue” is close to my heart. We always say that we are ready to support any good idea, and this summit is one of them. A better understanding of challenges, decreasing vulnerability to climate change impacts and building climate resilience, and putting forward smart solutions, these are the reasons why we met here,” Leligdonova said.

Other partners in the project included Segal Family Foundation, Konza Technopolis, and KTN Global. It was attended by notable partners in the Go Blue projects including GIZ Kenya, Business Finland, MSEPT, KIMISITU SACCO, Swahili Box, Tech Bridge, Close the Gap, and GYN.

Source: Capital fm

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