The innovation fund of the energy supplier Badenova supports climate and water protection projects in the region with almost one million euros. The Freiburg & Region Nutrition Council and the district benefit from this, among others.
Since the Freiburg energy and environmental service provider Badenova was founded in 2001, the municipal shareholders have been feeding three percent of their profits into the pot for innovative climate and water protection projects in the region, according to a Badenova statement. In the first round of funding for 2023, the supervisory board has now approved 962,340 euros for nine projects. According to the announcement, the innovation fund is the point of contact for many innovative companies and institutions in the south-west of the republic. Up to 50 percent of the project costs would be funded; further co-funding is permitted.
“The Badenova Innovation Fund ensures that the money stays in the region or that further funds flow here, that ideas mature here and innovations can be passed on. This approach fully corresponds to our target image: with the region, for the region,” says Badenova- CEO Heinz-Werner Hölscher quoted. Some of the new projects are directly related to the energy and heat transition.
The diversity of the projects is exemplified by one in which the regeneration of soil quality with simultaneous CO2-Binding will be discussed, so the message. This Steingrubenhof project in St. Peter is to be supplemented by an information and education center as a regional contact point for farmers, municipalities and private individuals – a “holistic compost lab”.
According to Badenova, there are also projects from the school sector. For example, the support association of the Theodor-Heuss-Gymnasium in Freiburg convinced the independent assessment committee with its application. According to this application for funding, the guiding principle of education for sustainable development has been firmly anchored in the educational plan for schools in Baden-Württemberg since 2016, but in practice there are great difficulties in meeting the goals of this educational plan, explains Badenova. The reasons given are the lack of clarity in the curricula of the various school types and in the curricula of the individual departments, as well as a varying variety of extracurricular providers. With the funding from the innovation fund, the high school wants to develop and implement a sustainability curriculum as a best practice model for the Freiburg area.
The district office of Breisgau-Hochschwarzwald is also supported by the fund: The aim is to promote soil biodiversity to increase soil fertility. The Freiburg & Region Nutrition Council also receives money from the fund for its nutrition strategy. According to the announcement, the funding amounts are between 20,000 and 150,000 euros. What is new is that there are two funding rounds. This makes it possible to implement a project idea faster than before.
According to Badenova, the innovation fund has contributed more than 30 million euros to more than 300 environmental projects since it was launched in 2001. The focus is always on innovative strength, not primarily the question of the income that can be generated with it in the future. Applications for new project ideas are welcome. The current application period ends on October 1st.
General information and the funded projects on the internet: badenova.de/innovationsfonds
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