Low carbon pioneers needed for climate change battle

Euan Hogg (left) and Stan Johnston of Water Engine Technology

Euan Hogg (left) and Stan Johnston of Water Engine Technology

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The search is on for the next wave of Scottish innovators who can lead the way as the country endeavours to tackle climate change problems.

The Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation (ECCI) is looking for new recruits for its ideas “incubator”.

Last year its Low Carbon Ideas Lab was launched to support those with inventions and innovations which could further Scotland’s low carbon economy.

The programme aims to turn concepts into realities with practical help on legal advice and funding guidance.

Those accepted onto the programme get office space at ECCI which is shared with academics working in the field.

Last week, the ECCI celebrated one of its successes from its first intake when Water Engine Technology - which harnesses energy from rivers - opened their test facility in the Borders.

Euan Hogg, director of Water Engine Technology, said the Low Carbon Ideas Lab had been crucial to taking his project to the next level.

He said: “Having people in that space who are like minded and to be able to collaborate with them has just been fantastic.

“Within the first two weeks we were put in touch with investment syndicates, potential customers and researchers.

“The space has been so exciting and has offered us so much.”

Other projects which have benefited include the East Africa Sisal Company, which produces a thick fibrous textile which has been used in peatland restoration in Scotland.

A spokeswoman for the Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation said the business incubator played a key role in developing low carbon projects.

She said: “The companies are like babies and we help them develop into fully fledged companies.

“Typically, they have been at a really, really early age and we help get them set up.

“One thing that they benefit from is being part of the low carbon network, sharing contacts and sharing ideas.”

The lab has so far helped with the development of six new products or services.

It is hoped to attract four new members to the Low Carbon Ideas Lab with applications open until 12 noon on Friday, November 6.

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