Towards environmental entrepreneurship – 7 sustainable innovations to follow in 2023
Environmental entrepreneurship has became more and more actual and preferred in the last years. By bearing the climate conditions in mind, and raising the awareness on saving the planet, many businesses have gone into the transition mode of transforming their businesses in being environment-friendly.
Though there are many ways that vary industry by industry on how this can be done, there are seven general trends that one should put the eye on in the upcoming period:
1. Green hydrogen
Green hydrogen, produced from water with renewable electricity, is a central pillar in the European REPower EU plan and has also been heralded as one of the “game-changers” to tackle climate change in the US. Industry already uses large amounts of hydrogen from fossil sources, with almost all of it from natural gas – the goal is to replace that with greener alternatives and thus, reduce the carbon emissions.
2. Renewable fuels in transportation
Being one of the biggest cause of polution, the transport industry is working very hard to create the solutions in becoming greener. One of the main solutions at the moment is the electrification. Then, the use of renewable fuels is also a lead to the way in sustainability. The industry is working hard on developing the technology and changing the game with it.
3. Innovations in agriculture and food
In this field, lab-grown meat that reduces the climate impact of cows’ methane emissions, and vertical farming that more efficiently uses both land and water resources are vital developments.
4. Chemical recycling of waste plastic
Plastic recycling is a must for two reasons, – one, it reduces the need to use new fossil resources in plastics production. And two, while plastics recycling can reduce plastics pollution, circulating the material in the plastics value chain multiple times can also reduce the carbon emissions resulting from incineration and the end of plastics’ life cycle.
Many food related companies are already working on creating the solutions to innovate waste plastic recycling.
The development aims to help Europe reach its target of a 50% recycling rate for all plastic packaging by 2025, and 55% by 2030.
5. Green energy storage solutions and battery technologies
Electrification and green electricity will replace fossil energy not only in the transportation sector, but also in the industry and living. The hydrogen, particularly green hydrogen, offers a way to sustainably scale up green energy storage solutions, with many trials underway for hydrogen-powered planes as well as vehicles. The big challenge is the availability of minerals, but innovations are on their way of becoming reality.
6. Heavy industry defossilization
One-fifth of global carbon emissions come from heavy industry, according to the University of Oxford, which means that action in that sector has more impact than most.
By its very nature heavy industry is one of the hardest sectors to wean off fossil fuels – to help keep global warming under control, the answer is to focus on the areas where carbon emissions can be significantly mitigated or avoided.
7. Circular business models
According to circular economy principles products should be designed for reuse, repair and recycle. This way, we will reduce waste, reuse materials, reduce costs and impact for greener environment.