Climate-KIC, a new carbon-free economy

Climate-KIC is the EU’s largest public private partnership addressing climate change through innovation to build a zero carbon economy involving companies and administrations in the new model economy. Its office in Spain is allocated in Valencia. Its director, Jose-Luis Muñoz, Climate Kic explains how it works.
Which is the role of the European Union in the fight against climate change? Innovation is a key element when tackling climate change? Who are the key actors in the adaptation and mitigation of climate change?
The European Union has been playing a key role for a long time on the fight against climate change, and has been one of the first actors commited with defined objectives (2020), policies (Covenant of Mayors), tools (H2020 LIFE +, …) and recently designation of a Commissioner for Climate Change (Miguel Arias Cañete).
The fight against climate change is the greatest challenge that mankind is facing and all our resources and efforts will be needed to combat it in the XXI century. This challenge has been understood by the European Union and it has launched an ambitious initiative, as Climate-KIC (Knowledge and Innovation Community on Climate Change) is. Climate-KIC is supported by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), a body of the European Union.

Zero carbon emissions
Climate-KIC is the EU’s largest public private partnership addressing climate change through innovation to build a zero carbon economy. This initiative brings together the main players in what is known as innovation pyramid: the most prestigious Univesities in Europe, the best Research Centers and Technological Institutes, as well large and small companies, and above all major European cities and regions.
The objective is make all stakeholders work together, ensuring a new socio-technological model creation, since the technology is not enough to bring about change in society, and we should involve all stakeholders, and change our way of doing things. But we know that the attitude will not be enough, but we have to provide it with tools.

Adaptation or mitigation

From the office of Climate-KIC in Spain, Center for Innovation in Climate Change, which is based in the Botanical Garden of the University of Valencia, we are clear what our role. Ours was one of the six leading European regions involved in this initiative that could see the opportunity to be at the forefront of innovations in climate change technologies, but also in territorial planning and implementing the best solutions in adapting to climate change or mitigation.
Education is at the heart of these themes to inspire and empower the next generation of climate leaders. We run programmes for students, start-ups and innovators across Europe via centres major cities, convening a community of the best people and organisations. Successful programmes as “Pioneers in Action for Climate Change”, led by the Climate-KIC office in Valencia, offers professional mobility, enriched with personal mentoring and training sessions for stakeholders in different sectors who face the challenge of climate change.
With more than 900 pioneers across Europe and more than 1,000 committed organizations, we´ve helped to create new business models, knowledge sharing between entities, long-term partnerships, changes in the way we work, … and above all create a critical mass of professionals working on adaptation and mitigation of climate change, creating new products and services that will ask society.

Circular Industry

Our approach starts with improving the way people live in cities. Our focus on industry creates the products required for a better living environment, and we look to optimise land use to produce the food people need.
In the Valencia region administrations are involved, such municipalities as Valencia and Castellon or Regional Government trhough IVACE (core partner), Universities (University Polytechnic of Valencia, University of Valencia, University of Alicante, CEU-Cardenal Herrera), business associations (Avaesen), technological institutes (ITE , IVE, IVIA, ITC), companies …
New enterprises and jobs

From education, entrepreneurship and innovative projects we have worked on such interesting topics as Covenant of Mayors promotion, improvement in building, sustainable urban planning, mobility plans and promotion of the bicycle or electric vehicle , improved industrial processes and new products, waste management, water treatment, etc., have not only created innovative solutions to address climate change but have created new companies and jobs in the environment of a green economy.
The challenges are many, but the attitude and the right tools can face each and create leadership opportunities or business. It is by this that I encourage everyone to contribute to this great challenge and join efforts to achieve a sustainable economy and a society committed.

Jose-Luis Muñoz

Director Climate-KIC Spain

RIC Valencia

 
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