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The German Energy Agency (Deutsche Energie-Agentur, dena) launches a global Energy Transition Award at the dena Congress on 22/11/2016 in Berlin.

More than 50 partners from over 20 countries are already supporting the “Start Up Energy Transition” initia-tive/dena’s Chief Executive, Andreas Kuhlmann: “We want to offer a platform and a network for innovative players, who see Paris and Marrakech as an opportunity, and fill the climate protection decisions made there with life”.

The German Energy Agency fired the starting pistol for the international competition “Start Up Energy Transition” at the dena Congress in Berlin. Start ups and young companies worldwide are invited to present their business models and their visions. Applications may be submitted from 2 December 2016 at www.startup-energy-transition.com.

The initiative’s patrons include the Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy, Sigmar Gabriel, as well as Federal Foreign Minister, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, whose ministries are actively supporting the initiative. The numerous international backers include, inter alia, the following: Patricia Espinosa, General Secretary of the UN’s Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC); Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, Director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK); Jules Kortenhorst, CEO of the Rocky Mountain Institute; Martha Isabel (Pati) Ruiz Corzo, Mexican environmental activist and winner of the UN environmental prize, the Champions of the Earth Award; Mohan Munasinghe, former Deputy Chairperson of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change IPCC; Connie Hedegaard, former European Commissioner for Climate Action (2010–2014).

There are six categories in total: “The Urban Energy Transition” for contributions to digitalised and sustainable cities; “Cleantech against Climate Change” for technologies that are helping to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in a wide range of sectors; “Future of Production and Manufacturing” for digital solutions in the industry; “Mobility meets Energy Transition” for sustainable mobility concepts; and “Platforms and Communities” for the expansion of networks. The special prize “Start Up SDG 7” will go to a company whose project contributes significantly to the 7th goal for the sustainable development of the United Nations (Sustainable Development Goals, SDGs): affordable, clean energy for all.

Energy transition summit for start ups

The Award will be given as part of the “Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue” (BETD) in March 2017 in Berlin. Over 1000 delegates from 70 countries will take part in the Federal Government conference. The winners of the “Start Up Energy Transition Award” will have the unique opportunity to network and exchange knowledge with companies, decision-makers, political visionaries and non-governmental organisations. The annual global Energy Transition Summit, jointly organised by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy and the Foreign Office, brings political decision-makers from all over the world together with experts from business, science, administration and civil society, and promotes the expansion of international cooperation in climate protection, energy efficiency, and renewable energies.

“We are proud that this unique initiative has been set into motion with so many great partners in such a short time, also with the support of both our patrons”, commented Andreas Kuhlmann, dena’s Chief Executive. “At the same time, we welcome more visionary cooperation partners, ambassadors and sponsors from all over the world who want to get involved in our project and contribute to this movement. Here, we hope to produce a show of confidence in the battle against climate change. Our goal is to bring pioneers and enablers of global energy transition together, and to establish an international network of companies, start ups and sustainability-conscious organisations. We can only make energy transition and climate protection a worldwide success with the help of innovation.”

Further initiative partners include the German Chambers of Commerce Abroad (AHK), the German Society for Interna-tional Cooperation (GIZ), the Borderstep Institute for Innovation and Sustainability, the KfW Group and Deutsche Welle. Moreover, there are now over 50 cooperation partners from more than 20 countries supporting the project, including the International Energy Agency (IEA), the internationally-renowned alliance Rocky Mountain Institute/Carbon War Room, the High-Tech Start-Up Fund (HTGF), the 2° Foundation, the international incubator Hub:raum, Climate-KIC, KIC InnoEnergy, the European Climate Foundation (ECF), as well as a long line of important German industrial associations and organisations from across the world. There is also a growing number of reputable companies in support of the project, like the Chinese energy company, Envision Energy, for example, whose Executive Director, Felix Zhang, gave more inspiration at the kick-off event on 22 November.

More information about the Start Up Energy Transition Award and how to apply for it can be found at www.startup-energy-transition.com.

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