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2018: Awards galore, project and funding wins and the world's biggest green ideas competition

From hosting the global final of the world's biggest green ideas competition to spearheading the launch of China’s first low carbon college, delivering a raft of cutting-edge new projects and supporting low carbon enterprises to bag £1.75 million, 2018 was a mammoth year for ECCI.

Here we look back at some of the highlights and celebrate the many people committed to using their talents and expertise to build a thriving zero carbon future.

We won funding to deliver a range of projects focused on unlocking cities' role in driving low carbon transformation, from our EU-funded ConnectedClusters, Procurement and Financing Sustainable Cities projects to our sustainability audit for Edinburgh City Council.

We continued to set the brightest new climate start-ups on the road to success with dedicated start-up support programmes. We welcomed 22 new cutting-edge Scottish businesses through our Climate-KIC Accelerator and Greenhouse business support programmes. The entrepreneurs taking part bagged funding of over £1.75 million in investments and prize money and scooped an impressive 54 awards. Successes came thick and fast, from MiAlgae taking the £100,000 top prize at the 12th Scottish EDGE awards to ECCI start-ups sweeping the leaderboard at Converge Challenge 2018.

Our award-winning low carbon hub continued to attract a huge range of people, organisations and enterprises. In April, ECCI, in a partnership bid together with resident charity Sniffer, won a Scottish Government contract to provide the secretariat service to the Sustainable Scotland Network (SSN), Scotland’s largest network of public sector sustainability professionals. ClimateXChange, Scotland’s centre of expertise connecting climate change research and policy based at ECCI, went from strength to strength winning funding of nearly £2 million.

Throughout 2018, more than 1,000 people a month came to a diverse range of events and activities in our Edinburgh hub. We hosted the world’s fastest electric car and a Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas at ECCI for the Edinburgh International Science Festival in April and in the summer ECCI residents SSN unleashed Climate Week Scotland, with the public sector running events up and down the country to celebrate action on climate change.

In November, ECCI hosted the Global Grand Final of ClimateLaunchpad 2018 - the world’s biggest cleantech competition - in a sold-out spectacular that attracted participants from 45 countries around the world. First Minister Nicola Sturgeon gave a keynote address praising ECCI’s role in putting Scotland at the forefront of the new climate economy, and ECCI-supported start-up Crover beat off stiff competition from hundreds of competitors to bag third place.

2018 was a big year for ECCI’s work overseas as the centre continued to drive transnational projects. In September, we supported the establishment of China’s first low carbon college, which was opened with the support of experts from the University of Edinburgh and leadership from ECCI. Based in the new smart city of Shanghai Lingang, it will provide a 'green bridge' for development of climate solutions and world-class research.

And in December, ECCI’s Deputy Director Ed Craig - who supported the establishment of ECCI through the award-winning Low Carbon Innovation project - took the reins as Executive Director for 2019 as we bid a fond farewell to founding Director, Professor Andy Kerr.

Don't miss a beat in 2019