A Global Warming Mitigation Project
2018 Prize Categories
Decentralized generation is an essential part of creating a low-carbon, sustainable and secure energy future for our planet. Field experience has revealed a number of barriers to the greater use of these technologies, such as grid integration and up-front capital cost. Therefore, this prize category will be for new electricity generation and generating technologies from (but not limited to) photovoltaic, wind, methane digesters, or hydropower micro-grid systems with generation capacity of up to 100kW (kilowatts). This includes, but is not limited to, efficient and/or innovative and/or effective deployment of existing energy generation methods.
Energy storage can assist and enable the adoption of intermittent and variable renewable energy, especially in distributed generation, therefore, this prize category will be for any type of system capable of storing electricity for immediate grid-scale dispatch, including, but not limited to, chemical (e.g., battery), mechanical (e.g., flywheel), and potential (e.g., pumped hydro) systems. Apply here.
Agricultural practices are both a significant (but neglected) source of emissions as well as a potential carbon sink, thus this category involves improvements in agriculture, silviculture, and animal husbandry methods or practices that reduce life-cycle emissions or increase sink capacity. Ideas include those that dramatically decrease waste and carbon emissions while increasing yields with greater efficiency. Rotating crops and herds, improving water retention, promoting species biodiversity, and combining trees, shrubs and pasture grasses to foster greater livestock yields are a few of the topics. Regenerative and conservation agriculture are the anchor concepts for this category. Apply here.
In addition to the three prize categories described above, we will be accepting a limited number of concepts which have the potential to alter and accelerate the current efforts in global warming emission reductions. The criteria for this prize category are that these must be fresh ideas, scientifically sound and scalable, demonstrating radical thinking that is potentially paradigm shifting. Examples for this category could be a technology that effectively and feasibly removes existing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere (direct air capture technologies) or oceans, emerging fuel or energy generating substitutes that successfully replace current high-carbon choices, and culture shifting practices that could lead to innovative carbon free behaviors. Drawdown.org calls these the "coming attractions". We call them the future. Apply here.