Innovation leading the way to a greener future

Sustainability is at the tip of everybody’s tongues – to the extent that large corporations and wider
industries are beginning to take action to help reduce their impacts and contribute to sustainable
innovation. Climate change is one of the most pressing issues in today’s society and the need to act
is imperative. That’s why so many targets are being set to work towards net zero, amongst other
actions, in a bid to operate more sustainably.

What is sustainable innovation?

Sustainable innovation refers to the innovation of new technology but with the planet in mind. In
other words, solutions are being created to help pave the way for a more sustainable future. This
could be something that helps nature to thrive, offers a less wasteful alternative or helps to reduce
greenhouse gases. Fortunately, technology is evolving and there has already been some brilliant
innovation in this space.


Bio-fuel is a game-changing energy source created from non food biomass, such as wood, agricultural
residues, biogas or cooking oils. There are ongoing innovations to make this an even more eco-
friendly process by using company waste such as coffee beans and other materials. Meanwhile, the
aviation industry is adopting more frequent use of biofuel to replace harmful aviation fuel. Global private
jet hire company VistaJet has goals to be carbon neutral by 2025
and investment in
sustainable aviation fuel is key to this. It’s an exciting space with the potential to grow.

Vertical farming

Vertical farming is another form of green innovation and involves growing plants indoors in layers.
This is facilitated by lighting and controlled systems that maintain good levels of nutrients. The
largest vertical farm in Europe grows 1,000 tonnes of food every year – and there’s great potential
for crops and plants to thrive without taking up significant areas of land. Key benefits of the vertical
farming method include a reduced need for pesticides, as well as optimising the amount of food
grown in smaller spaces.

Energy storage
Energy storage systems are used to convert electricity into energy stores, be it thermal, chemical or
mechanical energy. This energy is then released when required. This system uses renewable sources
of energy, such as solar energy, making it a more sustainable option in the long term. Key examples
within the industry include the automotive sector embracing EV vehicles, as well as the energy
industry seeking out renewable methods. National and international targets are also pushing
industries to embrace these methods.

Circular business models

The circular economy refers to a production and consumption model that reduces the amount of
end waste – unlike in linear economy models – so that this waste can then be inputted back into the
cycle to repeat the process. This means that waste can be recovered, giving it a new life. The process
follows the concept of reduce, reuse, and recycle to help extend product life cycles time and time
again. In its simplest form, this might look like a return scheme for cans and bottles. This way, fewer
resources will need to be extracted to create new products from scratch.

To conclude

While there is still a long way to go to change consumer habits and get additional businesses on
board, green innovation is a promising step in the journey to reducing the impact we have on people
and the planet. An innovative landscape will help to foster more progress in this space.