Entrepreneurs from Croydon have won £15,000 to develop a platform which can geo-map sources of plastic pollution. Plastic Patrol was awarded the start-up funding at the inaugural Geovation Conference after impressing judges.
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Founded by adventurer and environmentalist Lizzie Carr – who last year became the first female to solo paddleboard the English Channel to raise awareness of plastic pollution – the team has developed an app to encourage community clean-ups.
Plastic Patrol will work closely with Geovation to develop the second phase of its prototype data platform, and a structure for capturing data which can be used by communities.
Carr said: “This started as a passion project for me, and to have now received funding from Geovation to take this to a new level is beyond my expectations. The app will include sophisticated technology that will allow us to identify the different types of plastics and the most prolific brands responsible.
“We want to continue campaigning for a ban on single-use plastics, and remove the tax burden from consumers to the manufacturers and retailers responsible. By crowdsourcing data through this application we are able to do this.”
The team can now call on the support of a network of experienced software developers, Ordnance Survey geospatial experts, Land Registry experts and Geovation mentors.
Alex Wrottesley, head of Geovation, explained: “Geovation surrounds them with useful expertise – people who can say ‘this will work technically’ or ‘this is the business model you will find most useful’. If we can provide them with access to technology, tools and expertise, then we can create innovation that works.”
Funding scoop for plastic pollution app