Event RecapBack
Zero Carbon Pitch
2018-04-18

JC COIL promotes carbon care innovative solutions
$70K goes to fund  “Zero Waste Daily Essential Kit” project

As seen at Spring Equinox this year, the flowering pattern of silk cotton trees was disrupted again. Former director of the Hong Kong Observatory Mr Lam Chiu-ying warned us again of the threat of climate change and urged us to act. Climate change is an imminent threat and we should not turn a blind eye. With a funding support of more than ten million Hong Kong dollars from the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust, CarbonCare InnoLab’s mission is to gather forces from organizations and the general public to promote the cause of sustainability through the incubation of “InnoTeams”  and encouraging them to kick-start their green innovative projects in Hong Kong.

Zero Carbon Pitch 2018, which symbolized the full completion of Cycle 2 of the JC COIL programme, was held on 7th April at Dream Impact. Four InnoTeams incubated by JC COIL and three teams selected from the Open Group competed for several funding awards by presenting their own carbon ideas to the judging panel. In his opening speech, Mr Chong Chan Yau, Co-founder and Advisor of CarbonCare InnoLab, said that he found very few members of the young generation in Hong Kong participated in international discussions of climate change issues these days. The mission of CarbonCare InnoLab is to drive for more innovation and action on climate change issues. He encouraged the participating teams to continue their good work on carbon reductions no matter they win or lose. 
Mr Ringo Mak, Advisor of CarbonCare InnoLab, introduced the JC COIL programme and the key events of the next cycle to the audience. 

Two prizes --“Best of InnoTeam Award” and Best Climate Innovation Award” --- went to WeFill”, giving this InnoTeam a total funding of HK70,000. “Home Carbon Buster” received the “Best of Open Group Award” with HK$50,000 funding. Another InnoTeam “Utentials”, which provides utensils renting services, received the “Audience Popularity Award” with HK5,000 funding. These teams will make use of the award funding to turn their ideas into action and make their low-carbon dreams come true.

The judges stressed
on the importance of the project feasibility: innovations didn’t have to be unrealistic. So, simple methods that help to organize the public into problem-solving actions could also be a form of innovation. “WeFill”, the winner of two awards, is made up of several young people with a passion for sustainability. They aim to provide convenient and caring “Zero Waste Daily Essential Kits” to shared flat or hostel residents. Their project idea was tested at a university dormitory and the co-living space “Bibliotheque”. The judges appreciated the team’s focus on actual needs, and the encouragement given to young people to build a green purchase habit while living on their own for the first time. “Home Carbon Buster”, winner of the Best of Open Group Award”, provides smart energy saving technology for families, helping them to enjoy a comfortable low carbon lifestyle yet still saving energy. The judges appreciated the team’s good use of existing energy saving technology to promote a low carbon lifestyle in Hong Kong.

A total of seven teams from the “Open Group” and “
InnoTeams” competed in this event for four awards. The four “InnoTeams” have received training from JC COIL. They include “Utentials”, which aims to provide utensils renting services to restaurants in malls, with a view to reduce the use of disposable utensils; “WeFill”, which plans to provide a “Zero Waste Daily Essential Kit” to tenants and hostel residents;  “Plantogether”, which targets to co-create high quality planting services with schools and educate the younger generation about recycling; and  “How gaming saves the Earth”, which intends to  raise the environmental awareness through specially designed board games. “Zero Carbon Pitch 2018” also welcomed applications from the public. Qualified teams competed under the “Open Group” category. The three short-listed teams were “Home Carbon Buster”, which aims to provide smart energy saving technology for families; “Extinguish Plastic, Leave No Trace”, which plans to set up drinking machines on hiking trails and barbecue sites to encourage bring-your-own-bottle practice; and “iSTEM ZC Fan”, which targets to introduce solar powered fans to reduce carbon emissions.

The judging panel of “Zero Carbon Pitch 2018” included Ms Vivian Lee, Senior Charities Manager of The Hong Kong Jockey Club; Ms Lai-chong Au, Executive Director of Delta Asia Financial Group; Dr Winnie Law, Associate Director of Policy for Sustainability Lab, Faculty of Social Sciences, The University of Hong Kong; and Mr Alex Cheng, Co-founder of Catalyst Builder and a perpetual entrepreneur. Veteran entrepreneurs of green business and social innovation were also invited to share their remarkable experience. Guest speakers included Ms Ada Ip, CEO of Urban Spring; Dr Loretta Tam, Co-founder of
CREATIVELYMADE Social Labs; and Mr Edmond Leung, Co-founder of GO CUP. Their sharing provided excellent insights for the participating teams and the public audience.