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Victoria circular economy business incubator accepting 2023 cohort applications

Project Zero aims to help grow businesses that reuse or rethink waste to create their products
An employee of Flipside Plastics’ 2021 pilot project collects coffee lids from Caffe Fantastico in Victoria. The company was part of the 2020 Project Zero circular economy business incubator. (Courtesy of Flipside Plastics)

Entrepreneurs looking to rethink waste will once again have the chance to grow their businesses through a Victoria-based incubator program.

Project Zero is looking for sustainably-minded start-ups as it takes applications for its 2023 cohort. The incubator specifically focuses on entrepreneurs pursuing the circular economy with the goal of reusing, refurbishing or reducing waste as a central component of their business.

The eight-month online program gives those with new green business ideas the opportunity to create and refine their business plan, learn business operation fundamentals and entrepreneurial skills, connect with mentors and develop a pitch for their concept.

Seventeen business ventures completed the program last year, marking Project Zero’s largest and first provincewide grouping since its inception in 2019.

There have so far been 46 graduates of the program, with those businesses projected to create more than 120 new green jobs in the province between 2020 and 2023, Project Zero said.

The incubator is free for successful applicants and will run from April to December. To be eligible, applicants must be based in B.C., planning to develop their operation in the province and must be operating a business, non-profit, product, service in its concept stage or make under $500,000 in revenue.

More information and application documents can be found at Applications will be accepted until 11:59 p.m. on Feb. 13.

Project Zero says the circular economy eliminates pollution and waste by retaining resources and manufactured goods within the system through innovation, reuse, repair, redistribution, reconditioning and recycling processes, all of which are powered by renewable energy.

It aims to counter the current economy’s resource-intensive model that generates high greenhouse gas emissions and waste.

READ: Global plastic waste leads to Victoria company’s upcycled soap dish


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About the Author: Greater Victoria News Staff

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