Google opens functions for circular-economy accelerator • TechCrunch

Google is spinning up a brand new, online-only startup accelerator centered across the elusive round economic system. The trouble is Google’s newest to assist environmentally centered startups develop whereas doubtlessly hooking them on its cloud merchandise within the course of.

Within the broadest of strokes, the round economic system represents a colossal shift in how humanity makes and makes use of stuff. As a substitute of primarily harvesting uncooked supplies to supply items that wind up incinerated, or in oceans or landfills, the round economic system provides another the place stuff is intentionally reused, repaired and recycled over and over. On the entire, this isn’t how the world works, however the idea has gained floor amongst consultants, in addition to some companies and lawmakers, in response to humanity’s runaway waste and climate crises.

“Yearly, humanity consumes excess of what the planet can naturally replenish,” wrote Google round economic system lead Mike Werner on the corporate’s blog. “We have to rebuild our relationship with bodily sources and the way we make, course of, use and recycle them,” he added, citing trend and meals among the many industries that candidates would possibly give attention to.

Applications for the accelerator opened right now, October 3, and can shut on November 14 forward of a February 2023 begin. The ten-week program targets startups and non-profit teams within the Asia-Pacific area and North America, providing mentorship and technical assist “by way of a mixture of 1-to-1 and 1-to-many studying classes,” per Google.

As with different “Google for Startups”-branded accelerators — equivalent to its climate program from earlier this 12 months — the search and promoting big isn’t taking fairness neither is it providing capital by way of this system. 

Google has introduced so many sustainability and climate-focused efforts to date that it’s troublesome to maintain tabs on all of them, but the practically $1.3 trillion firm has additionally been known as out for its banking practices, which not directly finance fossil gasoline growth. The issues don’t finish there: Google knowledge facilities gulp down water to remain cool, raising concerns in communities the place water is scarce. Google can be a serious participant within the smartphone business, which has an alarming track record of its personal, concerning each the environment and its treatment of workers.

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