Indian startup Kheyti, pioneering a solution for small local farmers to reduce costs, increase yields and protect livelihoods on the front lines of climate change, was among five winners of the Earthshot Award for their innovative solutions for biggest environmental challenges facing the planet.
Prince William and the Earthshot Prize announced the 2022 winners in Boston on Friday — a group of accomplished entrepreneurs and innovators who are leading innovative solutions to repair and regenerate the planet.
Each winner received a £1 million prize at the second annual Earthshot Awards ceremony, which will be broadcast on Sunday on the BBC and will begin streaming on December 5 on PBS.org and the PBS app.
Inspired by former US President John F. Kennedy’s Moonshot Challenge in the 1960s, which united millions around the goal of putting a person on the moon within a decade, the Earthshot Prize aims to discover and help scale innovative solutions that put the world on a path to a stable climate by 2030 — a world where communities, oceans and biodiversity can thrive in harmony.
Each year during this critical decade for the planet, five winners will be chosen for their innovative solutions to five of the biggest environmental challenges facing our planet.
These five Earths are: Protect and Restore Nature; Clean our air; Revive our oceans; Build a world without waste; and fix our climate.
Speaking at the ceremony, the Prince of Wales said: “I think the Earthshot solutions you’ve seen tonight demonstrate that we can overcome our planet’s biggest challenges. And by supporting and expanding them we can change our future.
“Along with tonight’s winners and finalists, and those to be discovered in the years to come, I hope Earthshot’s legacy will continue to grow, helping communities and our planet thrive.”
The five 2022 winners are:
Protect and restore nature: Kheyti — a pioneering solution for small local farmers to reduce costs, increase yields and protect livelihoods in a country on the front lines of climate change.
India is home to 100 million smallholder farmers, many of whom are affected by the severe effects of climate change, including heat waves and pests.
Kheyti has developed a simple solution that is already having a considerable impact. The Greenhouse-in-a-Box is designed for small farmers and the crops they grow, providing shelter from unpredictable elements and destructive pests.
They also train and support farmers to ensure their greenhouse is as efficient as possible.
The results are dramatic. Plants in greenhouses require 98% less water than those outside, and yields are seven times higher. Ninety percent cheaper than standard greenhouses, Kheyti’s solution does more than double farmers’ incomes, helping them invest more in their farms and their families.
By using less water and fewer pesticides, they also protect the planet. Today, 1,000 farms have a Kheyti greenhouse, and by 2027, Kheyti hopes to reach 50,000 farmers with Greenhouse-in-a-Box.
Clean the air: Mukuru Clean Stoves, Kenya — a start-up that provides women in Kenya with cleaner burning stoves to reduce unhealthy indoor pollution and provide a safer way to cook.
Mukuru Clean stoves offer an alternative by using processed biomass from coal, wood and sugarcane rather than hazardous solid fuels. It burns cleaner, creating 90% less pollution than an open fire and 70% less than a traditional stove. They’re even cheaper, costing just $10 and cutting your current fuel costs in half.
Revive our oceans: Indigenous women of the Great Barrier Reef, Australia –– an inspiring program led by women that combines 60,000 years of indigenous knowledge with digital technologies to protect the land and the sea.
The Queensland Indigenous Women Rangers Network holds a great deal of Indigenous wisdom and over the past four years has helped build the next generation of Women Rangers.
The program has trained over 60 women, encouraging new conservation approaches through knowledge sharing and storytelling. Members of the network continued to find work as rangers in Queensland or in conservation elsewhere.
Build a world without waste: Notpla, United Kingdom — a circular solution that creates an alternative to plastic packaging from seaweed.
London startup Notpla, founded by Pierre Paslier and Rodrigo Garcia Gonzalez, believes that the future of packaging is not plastic, but seaweed.
Notpla is a natural and biodegradable plastic alternative made from seaweed and plants and can be used to create a range of packaging products such as a balloon to hold liquids, a cover for food containers and a paper for industry cosmetics and fashion. .
This year, Notpla has made more than 1 million takeaway boxes for JustEatTakeaway.com, and the company has the potential to replace more than 100 million plastic-covered containers in Europe in the future.
The company continues to research and develop new formats and solutions, with flexible films and rigid materials in the pipeline.
Fix climate: 44.01, Oman — Created by childhood friends who developed an innovative technique to turn CO2 into rock and store it permanently underground.
Oman’s 44.01, named after the molecular weight of carbon dioxide, removes CO2 by turning it into rock, removing it from the atmosphere safely, efficiently and permanently by mineralizing it in peridotite, a rock found in abundance in Oman, USA, Europe , Asia and Australasia.
Peridotite mineralization is a natural process, but in nature it can take many years to mineralize even a small amount of CO2. 44.01 speeds up the process by pumping carbonated water into peridotite seams deep underground.
In its second year, The Earthshot Prize has embarked on an ambitious nine-month global search process, seeking the most inspiring and innovative solutions to the biggest environmental challenges facing the planet.
More than 1,000 applications from around the world were considered, with 15 finalists from 10 countries chosen through a selection process supported by an expert advisory panel.
The final five winners were selected by The Earthshot Prize Council, a diverse team of influential individuals including: Prince William, Queen Rania Al Abdullah of Jordan, David Attenborough, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Indra Nooyi, Shakira Mebarak, Christiana Figueres, Luisa Neubauer, Cate Blanchett, Yao Ming, Daniel Alves Da Silva, Ernest Gibson, Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim, Jack Ma and Naoko Yamazaki.