AMSTERDAM, The Netherlands, June 13 (Xinhua) -- Cross border collaboration is absolutely necessary to promote global transition to renewable energy, said energy experts and entrepreneurs here on Tuesday.
"Climate change is a real issue. We need to address it by working together across the world. Governments, companies, scientists, and NGOs, all have a role to play. No one can do this in isolation," said Rob van Leen, Chief Innovation Officer at DSM, a Dutch company engaged in health, nutrition, and materials businesses worldwide.
"Business can help delivering on the Paris agreement ambitions with innovations that will generate jobs while ensuring low-carbon prosperity and future-proof our economies and companies," Leen told an audience of scientists, entrepreneurs and experts on renewable energy during the "Bright Minds Challenge" final competition.
Spearheaded by DSM and a global coalition of companies and knowledge institutions active in solar energy and renewable energy storage, the competition aimed at helping scientists around the world with innovative solutions to overcome barriers they face in scaling up their ideas.
"Cross border collaboration is hugely important. Climate change is a global problem, which cannot be solved by one country or one company alone. It is pivotal that we all work together," said Jeremy Leggett, a British social entrepreneur and founder of Solarcentury, an international solar solutions company.
A total of 55 researchers from 22 countries submitted their patent-ready solar and energy storage innovative solutions.
Scientist Ernesto Julio Calvo from Argentina, who invented Inquimae, a new way of extracting lithium which is powered by solar energy and is quicker and cleaner than any existing technology, won the first prize in the "Bright Minds Challenge".
He will be awarded with 500 hours expert support to accelerate the scaling-up of his solution from DSM and its partners.
Richard Awuor from Tanzania and innovator of Cellulike's "pay-as-you-go" system for solar light rental that will help off-grid communities gain access to electricity came second, while Howard Weinstein from Brazil innovator of the Solar Ear, which makes hearing aids affordable by providing rechargeable hearing aids using solar-powered batteries won the third prize.