The UK Government is pressing on with its ambitions to create a more eco-friendly country, with greener energy by awarding £19m to various innovative green businesses. All 37 are start-ups, or medium-sized businesses and they should all help the country reach its 2050 net zero target.
The money comes from the Entrepreneurs Fund which is part of the government’s £1 billion Net Zero Innovation Portfolio. In order to receive a grant, businesses had to send in applications with plenty unfortunately missing out.
The winners represent a wide range of fields, from renewable energy storage to methane capture. This is the ninth round of funding to be allocated from the Entrepreneurs fund, with around £120m being dished out in total thus far.
In addition to the £19m that has been spread across the 37 green businesses, a further £5 million has been available as part of a new competition. The Local Industrial Decarbonisation competition launches this summer and aims to support groups of industrial businesses in the United Kindom.
As part of the competition, businesses will work in “clusters” to develop decarbonisation plans that will help towards a low-carbon future. The winners will be announced later this year, with more details to follow in due course.
Supporting a nation of energy innovators
Just two days ago, Rishi Sunak decided to dismantle the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS). The Prime Minister believes that breaking the department up and splitting its functions across multiple, new departments will provide a more efficient way of working.
One of these newly formed departments is the Department for Energy Security and Net-Zero. Grant Shapps has been given the role of Secretary of State for the Department meaning he will be playing a massive role in ensuring the country is moving toward its net-zero targets. Shapps was previously the Secretary of State for BEIS in Sunak’s government.
The announcement of the 37 winners is one of the first things that Shapps has done since being in the post. He said:
“The UK is a nation of innovators, and this funding will help the next generation of energy pioneers develop cheap and green technologies of the future.
This will not only deliver more green jobs and cheaper energy but also create world-leading solutions to help us reach net zero and economic growth.”
A look at some of the beneficiaries
Five of the standout businesses to receive money from the fund are as follows:
- Jet Engineering System Solutions: They will be developing a 5g floating network that will aid wind arm installation via quick and reliable long-range communications.
- Inductive Power Projection: They will be developing a high-frequency wireless charging demonstrator that will be able to power floating offshore drones that will be used to ensure wind farms are being appropriately maintained.
- RFS Power: They are developing the first hydrogen-manganese-based battery. These batteries will replace lithium batteries.
- Build Solar: They are developing a low-cost translucent brick that can double up as a solar panel. The money they’ve received will help them to commercialise the product.
- Clearwell Technology Ltd: They will be designing and developing a thermal pip miling tool for well plugging. This green tech could change how oil and gas wells are sustainably decommissioned.
Clearwell Technology Ltd is one of five Scottish businesses to receive funding, something that has pleased Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Scotland, John Lamont. He said:
“I am delighted that five Scottish projects have received funding from the UK Government. Energy innovation is a vital part in helping the UK reach our net zero target by 2050 and these Scottish projects will be key to discovering decarbonisation solutions as well as helping to boost green jobs and economic growth.”
The other four Scottish businesses to receive funding are Flex Marine Power Ltd, Innovatium Group Ltd, Synaptec Ltd, and Power Enable Solutions Ltd. To find out what each of these businesses are looking to do, as well as all of the other beneficiaries, head to the published list on the Government website.
Grant Shapps’ historical voting record is a little at odds with his new role, most notably voting against the idea of placing the net-zero target into the “core mission” of the Advanced Research and Invention Agency. Despite that, the Energy Entrepreneurs Fund is a fantastic way of providing innovative businesses with the support they require to help the UK become greener and Shapps has overseen 37 worthy beneficiaries on this occasion.
In 2023, Curia will be hosting the Energy Sustainability Commission. For more information, or if you would like to get involved in the Commission, get in touch at email@example.com.