Who made the cut for The Liveability Challenge 2022?

From cultivated meat to carbon measurement, sustainability innovation competition The Liveability Challenge 2022 attracted more than 400 applications from more than 60 countries. This year's finalists are from Asia and Europe.

The Liveability Challenge 2022 edition
Back for its fifth year, The Liveability Challenge is presented by Temasek Foundation and organised by Eco-Business, and provides a platform for connecting investors and sustainability entrepreneurs. Image: Eco-Business

The finalists have been selected for the 2022 edition of The Liveability Challenge (TLC), a global sustainability innovation competition now in its fifth year.

From a field of more than 400 entries from 60 countries, six ideas to make Southeast Asia’s cities more liveable and resilient have been selected by TLC’s shortlisting panelists, from three different themes; helping cities speed up decarbonisation, meet increasing demand for food, and conserve our planet’s natural ecosystems.

All of the finalists are from Asia Pacific or Europe, with contenders from Singapore, United Kingdom, Belgium, Japan, New Zealand and Germany making the final cut.

The ideas that made the shortlist ranged from carbon capture to cell-based fish fat.

The grand prize winner will receive S$1 million in project funding from Temasek Foundation, the philathropic arm of state investor Temasek, which is presenting the event with Eco-Business.

Contenders also stand to gain a minimum of S$100,000 investment each by Amasia, Silverstrand Capital, Quest Ventures, PlanetRise and Purpose Venture Capital.

Decarbonisation finalists

Team: Red Dot Analytics (Singapore)
Solution: Low-energy data centres through artificial intelligence and digital twin technology

Team: CQUESTR8 (United Kingdom)
Solution: Permanent utility-scale CO2 sequestration for cities and industry

Food & agritechnology finalists

Team: Wasna (Belgium/Singapore)
Solution: Making cultivated meat affordable through a low-cost universal serum

Team: ImpacFat (Japan/Singapore)
Solution: Enhancing nutrition and taste of alternative meats with cell-based fat

Nature-based solutions finalists

Team: Fairventures Social Forestry (Germany)
Solution: Sustainable land management and livelihood improvement through a scalable social forestry model incorporating blended finance

Team: GAIT (New Zealand/Singapore)
Solution: Measuring carbon flux in real-time for monitoring of carbon

The winner will be announced after a live judging event on 9 June 2022, in partnership with Ecosperity Week 2022, Temasek’s annual sustainability event.

The judges include Patti Chu, co-head of impact investment, Silverstrand Capital, Steve Melhuish, impact investor at Planet Rise, and Lim Hock Chuan, head, programmes, Temasek Foundation.

At a panel discussion for the launch of TLC in January, entrepreneurs said that breakthrough innovations in sustainability should look beyond trending topics to have more impact. Paul Santos, managing partner of venture capital firm Wavemaker Partners, noted that vehicles contribute to about an eighth of Southeast Asia’s carbon emissions, but over 60 per cent of venture capital in the region goes on low-carbon transport solutions like electric vehicles.

Winners of past editions of The Liveability Challenge include a replacement for single-use plastic straws using a biodegradable biopolymer, a lab-grown alternative to cow’s milk, and sustainable plant protein made from microalgae.

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