Youth Sustainable Development Network and Kamim Technologies win Zero Emission Generators Circularity Challenge

Having been selected to receive the $50,000 competition prize, Cool Cycle will use the funding to launch a pilot project in Epe, Lagos State, Nigeria.

The CoolCycle Project is the combined effort of Youth Sustainable Development Network and KAMIM Technologies, led by Damilola Hamid Balogun and Adekoyejo Kuye.

The CoolCycle Project repurposes parts from disused generators to create affordable, energy-efficient solar-powered cooling systems, addressing generator waste and cooling needs to transform waste into wealth for Nigerian farmers.

The cold storage systems will be deployed at farm clusters, first-mile distribution/ aggregation centres, local markets and other critical points across the food supply chain. 

This solution simultaneously tackles post-harvest losses and environmental challenges associated with end-of-life generators. 

The project’s pilot in Epe will involve the repurposing of eight end-of-life generators, resulting in the construction of two commercial-size walk-in 5,000kg capacity cold rooms, deployed on two farms.

The ZE-Gen Circularity Challenge, launched in May 2023, aims to accelerate the circularity of fossil fuel-powered generators in Nigeria

Through the multi-stage competition, applicants were assessed against key criteria, including potential scalability, circular economy alignment, fossil fuel displacement, job creation opportunities, innovation and sustainable development consideration. 

The top three candidates received funding of $10,000 each, undertaking an eight-week feasibility study to develop and test their technologies, culminating in a final pitch presentation to the panel of experts to determine an ultimate winner. 

Reflecting on the vision and ambition of the project, Adekoyejo Kuye, The CoolCycle Project Co-Ordinator said: “Waste management is undergoing a shift from a linear model to a circular and resource recovery one, and The CoolCycle Project exemplifies this transformation in action. 

“Our initiative revolves around the innovative repurposing of components from discarded generators, seamlessly integrating them into cost-effective cooling solutions to mitigate environmental hazards associated with end-of-life fossil generators, enhance access to sustainable energy and deliver essential cooling solutions to underserved communities. 

“We are confident in the transformative potential of this project, and to scale from these commercial pilots to other farming communities across Nigeria.”

About the ZE-Gen Circularity Challenge:

The challenge is part of the Zero Emission Generators Initiative (ZE-Gen), a collaborative effort led by the Carbon Trust and Innovate UK, with support from UK aid through the UK Government’s Ayrton Fund – via the Transforming Energy Access platform (TEA) and the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF), and support from IKEA Foundation. The Climate Emergency Collaboration Group has contributed to funding the ZE-Gen Circularity Challenge as part of its work to support the Energy Transition Council. The Carbon Trust, in partnership with Integrate to Zero, launched the Challenge to investigate innovative solutions that could accelerate the circular economy for end-of-life and second-hand fossil fuel generators as a way to scale renewable energy systems, which are often held back by continued genset usage.