Ignite Labs, the Nova Scotia Innovation Hub and BioNB are teaming up to host START[2020], an Atlantic Canadian sustainable innovation pitch competition that will award $25,000 to the winning entrant.

The new program was announced this week by: Ignite Labs, which operates innovation incubators in rural Nova Scotia; The Nova Scotia Innovation Hub, a group dedicated to sustainable energy; and BioNB, the life sciences association in New Brunswick.

START[2020] is targeting entrepreneurs, startups, and existing businesses across Atlantic Canada that are producing innovation in the “biocircular economy”. That means they are producing products or services that are based on natural materials, or that are renewable, bio-degradable, and/or can be composted.

“START[2020] was created to build an ecosystem of sustainable innovation in Atlantic Canada and to help entrepreneurs, startups, and existing businesses bring their ideas to reality,” said Ignite Northern Regional Manager Sebastian Green in the statement. “This competition also represents a collaborative, inter-provincial, partnership between Ignite, The Innovation Hub, and BioNB, which makes positive change possible.”

The competition is open to any company or individual creating new value with bio-resources from any industry or sector. As well as a $25,000 prize, the winner stands to gain access to commercialization opportunities through partner organizations, prospective investors, and industry experts.

Examples of value-added innovation in the biocircular economy are:

•            Creating new products from natural sources, such as wood fibre or seaweed;

•            Creating new products from waste or biproduct materials, such as municipal solid waste or fly ash;

•            Capturing and storing greenhouse gasses from the atmosphere;

•            Capturing biogas from landfills;

•            Or creating energy from biomass materials.

Applications are open until Feb. 29, and five finalists will be selected by April 1. They will be invited to pitch at the Atlantic BIOCON 2020 conference in May. The five finalists will each have five minutes to pitch their ideas followed by five minutes of questions from a panel of judges.

You can find more information and apply here.