Google is launching a new, online-only startup accelerator centered around the elusive circular economy. The effort is the latest version of Google to help environmentally oriented startups grow, while potentially connecting them to their cloud products at the same time.
In its broadest sense, the circular economy represents a colossal shift in how humanity makes and uses things. Instead of primarily harvesting raw materials to produce goods that are burned, or end up in oceans or landfills, the circular economy offers an alternative in which things are consciously reused, repaired and reused. Overall, this is not how the world works, but the concept has gained ground among experts, as well as some companies and lawmakers, in response to the runaway humanity. waste and climate crises.
“Every year, humanity consumes far more than what the planet can naturally replenish,” Mike Werner, Google’s circular economy leader, wrote of the company. blog. “We need to rebuild our relationship with physical resources and how we make, process, use and recycle them,” he added, citing fashion and food among the industries that applicants could target.
Applications for the accelerator opens today, October 3, and closes November 14, ahead of a start in February 2023. The 10-week program targets startups and nonprofit groups in the Asia-Pacific and North America region and provides mentorship and technical support “through a mix of 1-to-1 and 1-to-many learning sessions,” according to Google.
As with other “Google for Startups” branded accelerators such as its Climate program from earlier this year – the search and advertising giant is not taking any equity nor is it offering any capital through the program.
Google has announced so many sustainability and climate-focused efforts so far that it’s hard to keep an eye on them all, but the nearly $1.3 trillion company has also been named for its banking practices, which indirectly finance the development of fossil fuels. Google is also a major player in the smartphone industry, generating an alarming track record from harmful practices.