What is WIPO Green?
WIPO GREEN is an online technology exchange platform that connects providers and seekers of environmentally-friendly technology to supplement the global network that addresses climate change. A thorough collaboration of its database, network and acceleration projects draws important stakeholders to increase efficiency in green technology diffusion and innovation.
What are Green Technologies?
Environmentally-sound technologies that protect the environment, contribute less to pollution, sustainably utilize resources, incorporate recycling as an essential part of all processes in their technology, and acceptably handle residual waste than the technologies that they substitute.
What brought about the introduction of the platform?
WIPO GREEN was one of WIPO’s contributions that revolved around the execution of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development’s Sustainable Development Goals. As deliberated in the Medium Term Strategic Plan, and Biennial Program and Budget, one of the WIPO’s nine strategic goals is to “Address Intellectual Property in Relation to Global Policy Issues”. To achieve this, the WIPO utilizes technology and expertise concerning intellectual property global policy debates with an extensive focus on the global challenges of climate change, global public health and food security. There are several partners participating to achieve practical solutions to these issues. The 2012 to 2017 Budget Program resulted in member states voting for the establishment and maintenance of WIPO GREEN.
How is WIPO Green funded?
While the regular budget funds the project, it has received contributions for certain special projects and events from governments of Japan, Brazil, France, Australia and the Japan Intellectual Property Association (JIPA).
WIPO GREEN: Mobilising technology to face environmental challenges
Described as an online marketplace for green technologies, WIPO GREEN has provided over 3,000 technologies and needs. For instance, sustainable access to water or environment-safe sanitation mechanism needs are given a platform to connect with developers of such technology. Centred around the WIPO GREEN database, the platform covers technologies that support mitigation and adaptation of climate change impacts. These technologies can include prototypes as well as products on the market available for joint ventures, collaborations, on license and for sale. Currently, the database incorporates seven classifications which includes a series of related subcategories:
Building and Construction
Farming and Forestry
Pollution and Waste: Air Pollution, Recycling and Waste Management
Products, Materials and Processes.
Partners’ involvement with WIPO GREEN:
With the provision of global access at no charge, the only requirement of WIPO GREEN is that users describe the environmental benefits of their technology. It presently aids around 1,500 global users from 63 different countries, in conjunction with universities and research facilities, small and mid-sized enterprises and global corporations such as:
ANAGEA Consultores S.p.A. (Chile)
Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences (China)
Fujitsu Limited (Japan)
Kenya Climate Innovation Center (Kenya)
Korea Institute of Energy Research (South Korea)
PROvendis GmbH (Germany)
University of Pennsylvania (United States of America)
To become a WIPO GREEN partner, any company or business with useful technology that could potentially supplement the climate change revolution, and anyone pursuing the search for solutions regarding problems related to climate may join.
Connecting other pressing issues with climate change concerns:
The year 2019 saw the introduction of the WIPO GREEN 2019 - 2023 Strategic Plan. It identifies the need to help WIPO GREEN member states to use IP and innovation in international approaches.
The interconnection between agriculture and the battle against climate is complicated, due to which the subject of food security was added to the WIPO GREEN platform under the 2019 Strategic Plan. This resulted in the enhancement of data under sustainable food production technology, like the science linked to reducing food waste.
This approach has a wide scope and spreads the development of agricultural productivity. In addition to reducing the vulnerability of crops and improving resilience, the initiative also reduces greenhouse gas levels.
Keeping in mind the true potential of climate-smart technology to face the challenges of climate change, WIPO GREEN, along with its partners, introduced an acceleration program in Latin America in 2019. This project was constituted to deal with local issues and identification of circumstances where climate-smart solutions could potentially be adopted. There was a focus on three sectors: wine production in Chile, zero-till agriculture in Brazil and forest management in Argentina.
Other initiatives include water management and agriculture management projects in Tanzania, Ethiopia and Kenya, a wastewater treatment project in Vietnam, Indonesia and the Philippines, a project dealing with energy, clean air, water and agriculture in Cambodia as well as Indonesia and the Philippines, and a global event in Switzerland dealing with water management.
International platform for innovation:
Following WIPO GREEN’s launch in 2013, it has gathered a large network of international participants involved in the mitigation of and adaptation to climate change. Every individual player in this network plays a separate role in alignment with its area of expertise. For instance, “database partners” add technology to the WIPO GREEN database. There are also partnerships revolving around policy, communication, research, finance and technical assistance.
Evidence of the positive impact of WIPO GREEN’s acceleration projects can be seen in the number of collaborations between seekers and providers of green technology. The Green School in Bali, Indonesia collaborated with the USA’s Zero Mass Water to allow the school’s Bali campus to utilise the SOURCE Hydropanel from Zero Mass Water to create the regular availability of clean drinking water to its students. SOURCE Hydropanel uses solar power to extract moisture from the air to produce potable water. Such collaborations are also achievable beyond the confines of specific programs. Registered entities from anywhere on the planet can exchange contacts and build partnerships to help them find sustainable solutions to the issues posed by climate change.