Clean Tech Delta is happy to announce that a new EU-project is accepted. The Interreg funded project; Growing innovation Through Sustainability (GIST) aims to fund projects that are subject to market failure due to high R&D costs. Therefore, the realization of large-scale experiments of innovative ‘cleantech’ solutions in the proces industry is accelerated, to significantly reduce the use of raw materials. This is an essential step in the transition towards a carbon neutral and circular economy. GIST uses a market driven approach wherein insight is given into cross-border knowledge and expertise that leads to strong concepts, consortia and increased investment readiness of innovations within companies. The project consortium consists of a partnership between the City of Rotterdam, iCleantech Flanders and Clean Tech Delta. 

Problem statement.

Market failure in the process-industry responsible for a significant part of the greenhouse emissions in Flanders and the Netherlands. It is found that in the capital intensive industry there are insufficient ‘Cleantech’ innovations to meet the ambitions. This is partly caused by that fact that one is not aware of the possible relevant technologies, knowledge suppliers and technical experts that are focused on the industrial scale. Additionally, the high development costs and the high risk profile play a big role. Together this leads to few sustainability innovations being calculated to a technical design, let alone leading to investment. This means that a large sustainable potential is missed, which is crucial to reach the emission goals that have been set. This market failure is the problem we will address with the GIST-project.

An example is in the a water re-use project on the largest chemical-industrial complex in the Netherlands, Chemelot. There is a 90% spillage in water-use. The project would have a great sustainable impact, however it requires a €3M investment, collaboration between 16 companies and a pilot (that has not been financed yet). There is no detailed concept developed, because there is no financing. On the other hand there will be no financing without a detailed concept. This vicious circle is part of the ‘valley of death’ in innovation and it is this circle that we are trying to break.

The mission of the GIST-project

The mission of the project is to speed up the realization of large-scale experimental implementation of innovative ‘cleantech’ solutions, with the aim of reducing the usage of raw materials. This is an essential step in de transition to a carbon neutral and circular economy. GIST uses a market driven approach in which cross-border knowledge and expertise will be made visible and reviewed. This wil lead to stronger concepts, consortia and increased ‘investment readiness’ for innovations at companies.

The target is to perform 10 large feasibility analysis’s (FEED studies) aimed at reusing raw materials and energy, where private parties contribute half. The aimed result is to create a leverage of investments outside of the project, by investments to scale up the tested technologies.

The name GIST stands for Growing Industry through a Sustainability Transition (GIST). Gist (the dutch word for yeast) is the micro-organism that transforms glucose into for example carbonic acid, which causes dough to rise. A fitting comparison for the transition and growth that GIST wants to achieve in the process-industry.

February 7 the kick-off of the project will take place, with all the parties involved. This will be the starting point of our mission together. Updated on the progress of this projects will follow soon!