Carbon Zero - Renewable energy innovation challenge launched today, March 9, 2017 at IIT Madras

The Carbon Zero Challenge, a renewable energy innovation challenge was launched on Thursday, March 9, 2017 at the IIT Madras campus by Dr. Jagmohan Singh Raju, IAS, Chairman, Tamil Nadu Energy Development Agency (TEDA), Prof. Bhaskar Ramamurthi, Director, IIT Madras, and Ms. Ariel Pollock, Public Affairs Officer, U.S. Consulate General in Chennai.

IIT Madras LogoIIT Madras Logo

Chennai, Tamil Nadu, April 6, 2017 /India PRwire/ -- The Carbon Zero Challenge, a renewable energy innovation challenge was launched on Thursday, March 9, 2017 at the IIT Madras campus by Dr. Jagmohan Singh Raju, IAS, Chairman, Tamil Nadu Energy Development Agency (TEDA), Prof. Bhaskar Ramamurthi, Director, IIT Madras, and Ms. Ariel Pollock, Public Affairs Officer, U.S. Consulate General in Chennai.

The challenge is a pioneering initiative by IIT Madras and IWMA (Industrial Waste Management Association) in collaboration with the U.S. Consulate General in Chennai, to identify innovative and indigenous solutions to India's unique energy problems. Through their efforts, the partners aspire to foster a sustainable ecosystem wherein renewable energy and clean technology ideas can emerge and develop into long-term solutions.

The launch saw attendance from prominent academicians and industrialists in the city, particularly from the realm of Clean Technology and Renewable Energy representing Regen Powertech, Gamesa Renewable, Udhaya Energy Photovoltaics, Poseidon Solar, and IWMA. Key members of the organizing committee and well-wishers of the event spoke about the significance of this effort, particularly in the context of renewable energy needs and developments in India.

Addressing the gathering Prof. Indu Nambi, Department of Civil Engineering and Head of Environmental and Water Resources Division said, 'Carbon zero signifies the collective humanitarian goal of reducing fossil fuels and minimizing greenhouse gas emission'.

Ms. Ariel Pollock, Public Affairs Officer, U.S. Consulate General, Chennai highlighted, 'Collaboration of India and US can provide several insights in the field of renewable energy'.

The event marked the formal launch of the competition, teams consisting of students/early entrepreneurs and/or start-ups belonging to these five states and/or UTs - Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Kerala, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, and Puducherry - may now register and submit their ideas on the web portal, from March 9 to April 30, 2017.

Launching the challenge Shri. Jagmohan Singh Raju, IAS, Chairman, TEDA said, 'Emerging technology should be engineered so as to merge with the current life style. We have to wisely utilize the locally available energy sources like wind sun etc. to reduce the dependency on nonrenewable energy resources'.

Participants are expected to develop a Zero Carbon/ Renewable Energy System for any of the five thematic areas (agriculture, urban housing, transport, industries, water, and wastewater) using a combination of one or more renewable energy sources (solar, wind, biogas geothermal, ocean, and hydro).

Mr. S. Mani, Chairman, IWMA considers Carbon Zero Challenge a good platform for young minds. 'If we have a triangle relationship that is between government industry and institute like IITs, it will give a solution for the carbon zero challenge', he said.

From June onwards, shortlisted teams (a maximum of 25) will proceed to develop their ideas into prototypes with guidance from mentors based in India/U.S., and financial assistance from organizers. The year-long competition will culminate into a 'Demo Day' in December 2017, when the winner(s) would be declared. At the 'Demo Day', participants will be given opportunities to network with prominent industrialists and investors to promote their prototypes and explore their scalability.

For more information about the competition:

Notes to Editor

About IITM (

Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IITM) was established in 1959 by the Government of India as an institute of national importance. The activities of the Institute in various fields of Technology and Science are carried out in 16 academic departments and several advanced interdisciplinary Research Academic Centres. There are over 100 well-equipped laboratories in the Institute for teaching and research. The Institute offers undergraduate and post - graduate programmes leading to the B.Tech., M.Sc., M.B.A., M.Tech., M.S., and Ph.D., degrees in a variety of specialisations. IITM is recognized world-wide for its intellectual leadership and ongoing innovation across every major discipline of engineering and pure science. IITM is a residential institute with more than 550 faculty and 9000 students. Students from 18 countries are enrolled here. The campus is self-contained and is located on a beautiful wooded area of about 250 hectares. It is home to approximately 300 species of trees and plants. IITM fosters an active entrepreneurial culture with strong curricular support and through the IITM Incubation Cell (

IITM has been ranked #1 amongst research and teaching institutions in Engineering in the India Rankings 2016 released by The National Institutional Ranking Framework, Ministry of Human Resources Development, Govt. of India -

Join IIT Madras on Facebook: ReachIITM

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About IWMA

Industrial Waste Management Association (IWMA) was established as a not-for-profit organization in 2002, with an initial strength of 35 members from various industries and an Executive Committee of nine members. The current strength of the Executive Committee is 16 with members from diverse industrial categories who have considerable expertise in the field of environment and/or practicing professionals. In addition, IWMA has experienced Advisors who guide and help implement the activities of the Association.

Apart from periodic review of landfill site operation, IWMA conducts seminars, training programs and offers consultancy services to industries/industry clusters in partnership with institutions such as Central Leather Research Institute (CLRI), Chennai and IIT Madras on environmental issues related to air, water, and waste management.

Also, IWMA has been actively involved in creating awareness among school children in areas of environment, renewable energy, recycling, climate change, water conservation, and global warming.

U.S. Consulate General Chennai

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