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€1,000,000 to be Allocated Between Global Change Award Winners in Public Online Vote

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Stockholm, Sweden – The five winners of the first ever Global Change Award have been selected by the expert jury. The ideas range from creating new textile out of citrus juice by-products and an online marketplace for recycling of textile leftovers to using microbes to recycle waste polyester. Now, the global public is asked to allocate the €1 million grant between the winners in an online vote starting at globalchangeaward.com.

The Global Change Award was introduced in August by the non-profit H&M Conscious Foundation, and is the first challenge for early stage innovation in the fashion industry. By catalyzing bold, pioneering ideas the overall goal is to protect the planet by closing the loop for fashion.

The response of the first Global Change Award is overwhelming. Over 2,700 innovators from 112 countries shared their ideas to help close the loop for fashion. The winning innovations are important contributions in the journey towards a circular fashion industry. Now, we invite the public to use their voice and influence how much funding each idea should get,” says Karl-Johan Persson, board member of the H&M Conscious Foundation and CEO of H&M.

The votes will have a real impact as they determine how the €1,000,000 grant will be distributed. The idea that gets the most votes receives €300,000, second most votes receives €250,000 and third, fourth and fifth most votes receive €150,000 each. Everyone can vote at globalchangeaward.com 1-7 February. The voting result and the people behind the winning innovations will be revealed at a grand award ceremony in Stockholm, February 10, and on globalchangeaward.com on February 11.

“The Global Change Award rewards truly out-of-the-box thinking in utilizing advanced technological approaches to make the fashion industry more sustainable – for example, creating less environmental waste and using less energy – while making fashion products that are even more appealing. In this sense, the five winning innovations all have the potential to be truly game-changing,” says Ellis Rubinstein, President and CEO, The New York Academy of Sciences and member of the Global Change Award jury.

The Global Change Award Winners 2015 in Short:

The polyester digester – using microbes to recycle waste polyester textile
Polyester is the world’s most common fiber for making textiles and clothes and it is difficult to recycle waste textile polyester effectively, since it is often mixed with other fibers. This innovation is developing a new type of microbe that eats waste polyester to create useful ingredients, which in turn can be used to produce new polyester without a loss in quality.

Growing textile fiber under water – utilizing algae to make renewable textile
Algae are organic sea-organisms that, when picked out, gives the opportunity to create a new type of raw material to produce renewable textile. Algae grow on energy from the sun and CO2; therefore it is a renewable resource. It also reduces the need for transportation of textile, since algae can be picked from coastal regions around the globe.

Making waste-cotton new – conversion of waste-cotton into new textile
A new technology is under development that dissolves textile waste and allows for it to be used as raw material in the production of new textiles, without loss in quality. It uses an environmentally friendly, solvent to dissolve the cotton in textile waste in order to spin new cotton-like textile fibers from the waste and create new textiles. This reduces landfill waste and saves natural resources.

An online market for textile leftovers – a marketplace for industrial up-cycling of spill in production
A global online marketplace is being developed that gathers and gets textile spill data from manufacturers directly to designers and into the design process of new clothes. The software tool gathers real-time data on waste inventory tied to the production. It then connects manufacturers with designers to get textile leftovers into production and into the design process instead of becoming waste.

100 percent citrus – creating new textile out of citrus juice production by-products
The by-products left over from extracting citrus juice lend an opportunity to produce a new type of sustainable textile for conscious consumers. The yarn produced from the by-products can be used to create different types of textiles and addresses the demand for high quality sustainable textiles.

Source: H&M

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