More than $2 million was awarded to Israeli climate-tech researchers and start-ups yesterday as part of the Climate Solutions Prize, a joint initiative by JNF Canada, Start-Up Nation Central, and KKL-JNF to incentivize climate innovation. The initiative culminated in the Climate Solutions Prize Festival on Wednesday, a gathering of government, business, and non-profit organizations dedicated to driving innovation in the climate-tech ecosystem. Hundreds of guests arrived at the festival held in the Hulda Forest in central Israel, and took part in the large-scale global summit and start-up expo.
The Climate Solutions Prize, founded earlier this year, is the most comprehensive initiative to support research and innovation in addressing the climate change crisis. The initiative operates on two distinct tracks. One is the Breakthrough Research Prize, which offers a grant for Israeli scientists and researchers. The other is the Startup Track, which involves a series of challenges that offer investment, cash prizes, and exposure to Israeli tech companies. Each Start-up Challenge is led by different industry leaders and philanthropic partners, such as Capital Nature, The Temasek Foundation, ESIL, Kornit Digital, SolarEdge, and Merck.
The winners in the Research Track are Prof. Avner Rothschild of the Technion for “decoupled water electrolysis for green hydrogen production at scale; Prof. Itzhak Mizrahi of Ben Gurion University for “Reducing greenhouse gas emissions and climate change by rational design of ruminants’ microbiome”; and Prof. Malachi Noked of Bar Ilan University for “Development of sodium-ion batteries.”
The winners in the Start-up track and Challenges include Copprint, which replaces the highly polluting chemical processes for manufacturing electronic circuit boards and antennas with simple printing of copper inks, in the Capital Nature Investment track; Marine Edge, which reduces fuel consumption for ships, improves propulsive efficiency, and minimizes carbon emissions for marine transportation, in the Temasek Foundation Livability Innovations Challenge, promoting sustainable living in southeast Asia; Styletech.ai, which revolutionizes visual marketing through AI, reducing the carbon footprint of the fashion industry, in the Kornit Sustainable Fashion Tech Revolutionary Challenge; Smart Resilin, for its production of resilin, a bio-based alternative to pollutant materials, in the Merck Greener Materials Challenge; and Red Solar Flower, which promotes carbon footprint reduction and improved food security by rapid gigawatt-scale solar panels deployment over agricultural areas, in the SolarEdge Energy Tech Challenge.
Jeff Hart, Executive Chair of the Climate Solutions Prize, said, “I could not be more excited to see this dream come to fruition of supercharging the ingenuity of Israel, the Start-up Nation, to help solve the climate crisis. I am thankful to everyone involved for helping with this critical initiative for future generations.”
Amnon Ben Ami, CEO of KKL-JNF: “KKL-JNF sees the development of knowledge and technology as an important and necessary basis for the fight against the climate crisis. The award is given after professional thinking and subsequently for exceptional cooperation for an important cause. The grants distributed to the winners will allow Israeli start-ups to develop significant technologies for all of us, and there is no doubt that Israel will continue to lead in the field. KKL-JNF, as the largest green organization in Israel, puts the treatment of the climate crisis as a flagship part of our operation. We operate in Israel and help organizations and countries around the world to become greener.
“Israel is currently home to more than 700 technology companies that are already developing solutions for addressing climate challenges, including sustainable food systems, circular economy, clean energy, efficiency and storage, sustainable mobility, sustainable manufacturing, nature protection, and many more,” said Start-Up Nation Central CEO,Avi Hasson. “As a recognized leader in developing advanced solutions to global challenges, Israel is extremely well-positioned to take a central role in battling climate change and bring solutions to the biggest shared challenge of our times.”
This article was written in cooperation with Climate Solutions Prize