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'Climathon' Seeks Climate Solutions From All Across the Globe

RP Siegel headshotWords by RP Siegel
Energy & Environment
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A group of 16 cities from around the world will be participating in a 24-hour climate hackathon, which they are calling a Climathon.

The event, which takes place on June 18, is being sponsored by Climate-KIC, the EU’s main climate innovation initiative, which is focusing all of its efforts on obtaining the best possible outcome at the COP21 meeting in Paris at the end of this year. Climate-KIC is a program of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology.

Participating cities are:


  • Beijing, China

  • Birmingham, United Kingdom

  • Bogota, Colombia

  • Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.

  • Copenhagen, Denmark

  • Frankfurt am Main, Germany

  • Gothenburg, Sweden

  • Helsinki, Finland

  • London, United Kingdom

  • New Delhi, India

  • Perth, Australia

  • Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

  • São Paulo, Brazil

  • Washington DC, U.S.

  • Wałbrzych, Lower Silesia, Poland

  • Wellington, New Zealand

  • Winterthur, Switzerland

Each city will select its own specific challenge to address. Having recently participated in a session such as this one in New York City, I was interested to see what challenges would be submitted.

Some examples are given below.


  • How can the city of Boston prepare for the multifaceted threats posed by climate change-associated sea level rise? Climathon teams may consider innovative solutions that include reporting tools, remote sensing applications, early-warning systems, shelter location maps and emergency-response plans.

  • How can we extend and amplify the work being done on climate change in New Zealand? What experiments can we design and run to further challenge thinking and connect new dots to current initiatives? (Wellington)

  • How can London collect better air quality data from various travel and transport modes? How can we reduce the impact that poor air quality has in London – making the invisible, visible – through creating maps to enable people to plan low pollution routes through the city?

  • How can Beijing encourage citizens to install distributed solar photovoltaic panels? How can the city give citizens better ways to invest in distributed PV panels?

Participation is open to students, startups and (budding) entrepreneurs, big thinkers, technical experts, or app developers.

At the end of the 24-hour brainstorming session, a jury of local stakeholders in each city will select the best idea. The winning teams will work with their respective cities during the following months to develop their technologies, apps or business models into viable climate change solutions.

Climate-KIC will provide support to the cities and winning teams with coaching and expertise from their European knowledge network. The winners and their solutions will be featured as part of the proceedings at the United Nations COP21 climate change conference in Paris.

Groups at Climate-KIC locations in Europe will enter a trajectory at Climate-KIC’s famous startup accelerator, offering all of the above support as well as unique exposure to Climate-KIC’s large network of startups, investors and businesses.

From the website, “Climate-KIC's Climathon is a great opportunity for citizens around the world to take direct climate action in their cities on that day by working on innovative solutions to local climate change challenges.”

Images courtesy of Climate-KIC

RP Siegel headshotRP Siegel

RP Siegel, author and inventor, shines a powerful light on numerous environmental and technological topics. His work has appeared in Triple Pundit, GreenBiz, Justmeans, CSRWire, Sustainable Brands, Grist, Strategy+Business, Mechanical Engineering,  Design News, PolicyInnovations, Social Earth, Environmental Science, 3BL Media, ThomasNet, Huffington Post, Eniday, and engineering.com among others . He is the co-author, with Roger Saillant, of Vapor Trails, an adventure novel that shows climate change from a human perspective. RP is a professional engineer - a prolific inventor with 53 patents and President of Rain Mountain LLC a an independent product development group. RP was the winner of the 2015 Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week blogging competition. Contact: bobolink52@gmail.com

 

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