A Melbourne council is set to offer up to $50,000 in funding to businesses, startups and community groups working on innovative projects which contribute toward the creation of recyclable solutions, and the development of a circular economy.

The City of Casey will source trial-ready solutions which address environmental challenges and provide benefits for the community, as part of its Circular Economy Living Lab program.

Proposals should leverage data, technology, and innovation to produce tangible benefits in areas identified as critical for the transition towards a local circular economy, according to the City of Casey. 

The Circular Economy Living Lab provides businesses, start-ups, and community groups with a rare opportunity to trial circular solutions with Council and community, gain feedback, and position solutions for further roll-out in south east Melbourne.

Successful applicants will receive funding of up to $50,000 to support the trial of the proposed project, starting in October 2022.

City of Casey Chair of Administrators, Noelene Duff PSM, said Council recognises the need for sustainable growth that provides future opportunities in the local economy and is encouraging all interested organisations to apply.

“Council is committed to creating and facilitating innovative opportunities that solve complex challenges in our community. The Living Lab approach will enable us to partner more effectively with organisations, to test new ideas, seek community feedback and support community led future investments,” Ms Duff said.

“Being part of the circular economy means being more resourceful and less wasteful — nothing goes to waste. The materials and products we use would all be recovered, reprocessed and reused in a closed loop, rather than losing their value and becoming waste in landfill.

“These grants aim to support organisations that can provide solutions to address the challenges of climate change. We’re looking for innovations designed to produce measurable economic, social, and environmental benefits, and a more circular economy in Casey.”

These trials will inform future planning, inspire local action, and provide partners with an opportunity to shape circular solutions in the community.

Organisations can apply for the Circular Economy Living Lab Grant from 22 July 2022 until 31 August 2022. 

Council is running an information and networking session for all interested applicants from 6.00 pm to 7.30 pm on Monday 8 August at the Old Cheese Factory, Berwick.

For more information and to apply, please visit Casey Conversations and the Living Lab Grant page. To register for the upcoming events, please visit the Smart City and Innovation Eventbrite page.

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