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Challenge Fund: Nine Seychelles' circular economy pitches awarded grants

Hydroponics as a cleaner way to practice agriculture and recycling tires found in nature are among the business pitches that clinched the top prizes in Seychelles' circular economy and a boot camp and pitch competition.

Twenty-two participants who attended the training camp at the Savoy Resort and Spa on Mahe were also taught how to make a successful pitch, giving them the chance to win between $15,000 to $20,000 under the Challenge Fund.

The fund is a financing program developed by the Joint Sustainable Development Goals Fund. The project, launched in March, is being implemented by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), International Labour Organisation (ILO), International Organisation for Migration (IOM) and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).

Barry Nourrice, an agriculture and environment consultant, told SNA that the plan he presented is for a hydroponics farm and is one of the nine proposals to receive the grant. "As with circular economy one of the things that businesses must be able to manage is the waste they produce, I believe this system will help keep farming sustainable," he explained.

Seychelles generates an average amount of 80,000 tonnes of waste annually and the primary landfill at Providence is expected to reach full capacity by 2025. Faced with a scarcity of land, the country will need to adopt a sustainable solid waste management system. With this in mind, another grant winner, Andy Julie, said that he will be setting up a business to tackle the number of old tires found in nature.

"It is an eyesore at the moment and while driving by, I realized that the tires could be turned into something that people can use in their everyday lives," he said. Julie said he has done extensive research to help him present a solid project.

Source: Seychelles News Agency

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