The Greening of Things
Written By Tom Zender
Phoenix-area interest and activity is increasing in the Greening of Things. Clean energy, food, technologies, equipment, supplies, ecology, and more are fueling our local economy. We are now part of the growing clean, green economy.
Within the scope of social entrepreneurship, there are some notable trends with green innovation and startup businesses – particularly those focused on solving major, global environmental concerns. Both consumers and investors are interested in this expanding marketplace.
These startups are not just measured by their financial successes, but additionally by their degree of environmental and social responsibility. But the real entrepreneurs in this arena are propelled by the passion to overcome all challenges. Here’s what trending in the growing, green niche:
Food Waste and Quality
In the United States, an estimated 35% of our food supply is wasted. And, the quality of produce is declining, while the levels of introduced chemicals keep climbing. Here are some examples of entrepreneurial companies targeting this issue:
- Fruitcycle – uses the “ugly” apple produce gathered at local farms to create healthy snacks
- Spoiler Alert – B2B app to manage food waste more efficiently. It connects companies with a surplus of food or valuable organic waste with organizations, which can do something with it quickly.
- Impossible Foods – offers sustainable vegetarian produce, which imitates cheese and meats.
- Leftoverswap – an app that lets you share your leftovers with people nearby.
- Wiser – a revolutionary hybrid technology company, which combines bio, clean, and high-tech systems to create a new solution for managing urban-generated organics through re-using leftovers and food waste.
Energy Waste and Clean Energy Sources
Promoting renewable, sustainable green energy sources is a major thrust by the U.S. and other national governments. While increasing use of solar energy has reduced energy consumption by 50%, other innovations are blooming. Here are some examples:
- Paranas – a solar lightening system, which brings natural lights to the darkest corners of your compound e.g. basement.
- SolarKiosk – provides remote communities with solar-powered autonomous business hubs. So far, they have established six subsidiaries across Africa and Asia.
- Choose Energy – a consumer-oriented marketplace to simplify shopping for electricity and natural gas rates, plan terms and discover renewable energy options.
- Arctic Sand – an ambitious project launched out of MIT with the goal to reduce 80% of all energy loss that occurs in the form of heat worldwide.
- Spares in Motion – an online marketplace connecting wind turbine buyers and manufacturers. Buyers can shop around for spare parts or discover brand new sourcing options.
- Twilight – a smart device, which could be plugged-into the city’s light network and managed remotely for ultimate performance.
A major threat to global welfare, dirty air is a killer. China is a primary example of the damage being done to the population. Here are some companies that are providing intelligent, innovative solutions to both global and personal environments:
ChemiSense – a wearable device, which measures the concentration of air pollutants in an environment. It sends a report to a mobile device phone and encourages taking respective action.
Smart Air Filters – an Indian startup on a mission to battle exorbitant pollution in Delhi. The company provides indoor air purifiers that are highly effective against PM 2.5 – the most common air pollutant in the city.
Foobot – a smart device packed up with various sensors to control and monitor the air quality indoors.
These are a few of the amazing new green technologies and businesses that are seeded and growing. More will be published in the coming months, including opportunities in the green ecosystem for small businesses, including the green retail space, and large, global industries.
By the year 2050, there will be more plastic waste in our oceans than fish – according to the World Economic Forum. But a New Zealand engineer has developed an innovative technology to convert ocean-based plastic waste into insulating, sound-absorbing construction blocks – with a much lower carbon footprint than concrete.
The Green Chamber
Phoenix hosts the Arizona Green Chamber of Commerce, which advocates for sustainable businesses. Their mission is to advance sustainable and diverse economic development in Arizona.
They note, “We are a portal of information, resources and connectivity aligning companies of all sizes and other community organizations, agencies and municipalities to address the long-overdue need for economic growth in Arizona that is sustainable and environmentally responsible.
Our vision for Arizona is diversified, responsible, and strategic growth of our "Green" industries will create a strong state economy that is more resilient and is better shielded from economic downturns. the Arizona Green Chamber of Commerce is your hub for resources to help your business.”
Visit The Green Chamber at http://www.thegreenchamber.org
Are you a technology-based company with high-growth potential? Join the CEI community of entrepreneurs and apply today!