On September 27, the World Tourism Day, the Lake Baikal Foundation announces the launch of the ecological grant competition «Green Steps» for representatives of small and medium-sized businesses of the Baikal region. The competition is held with the support of the general partner – «Asia-Pacific Bank» (JSC).
The purpose of the competition is to support sustainable environmental development of business and social entrepreneurs in the Baikal region, namely in those areas of the Irkutsk region and the Republic of Buryatia that are located in the Central Ecological Zone of the Baikal Natural Territory.
The emphasis on the Central Ecological Zone is not accidental, because it is popular among tourists. In order to preserve the unique ecosystem and harmonious socio-economic development of local communities, it is impossible to do without an active position of business: both in approaches to the organization of its activities and participation in eco-education events for citizens.
«The grant competition for business is the first step towards supporting responsible entrepreneurs, finding solutions for stakeholders on impact investments in the Baikal region. It is important for us to get to know those for whom the Sustainable Development Goals become part of the DNA of business, and we have chosen the path of practice-oriented acquaintance. As part of the joint initiative of the ATB and the Foundation, we will support the process of greening business on Lake Baikal based on the objectives of the following UN Sustainable Development Goals until 2030: «Clean Water»; «Clean Energy»; «Responsible consumption and Production»; «Sustainable cities»; «Conservation of terrestrial ecosystems»; «Partnership in the interests of the SDGs», – says Anastasia Tsvetkova, General Director of Lake Baikal Foundation.
«We are pleased to support the Lake Baikal Foundation with this necessary initiative. Irkutsk Region and the Republic of Buryatia are important regions of ATB presence. This is not just a contribution to the support of small and medium-sized businesses in the Baikal region, but also an opportunity to help them implement the principles of social and environmental responsibility in their activities. And for our bank, it is a step forward in the field of sustainable development, in which the expertise of the Lake Baikal Foundation is irreplaceable,» said Alexey Korovin, Chairman of the ATB Management Board.
The Lake Baikal Foundation offers support for projects in three categories:
- «Environmental innovation in business»: projects aimed at introducing technologies for the rational use of resources and reducing the burden on the environment. For example, the introduction of sustainable management of consumer waste, including its processing; installation of energy- and water-saving equipment; transition to alternative energy sources;
- «Sustainable human settlements»: projects aimed at developing infrastructure and improving the environment in cities and settlements. The priority direction is the ecological improvement of the public territory in the locality of the location of the business. The target audience of the project should include not only employees of the company, but also consumers of business services, as well as local residents. One example of a potential project is the improvement of a public area near a hotel or cafe using recycled materials from recycled materials;
- «Green Corporate Environment»: projects aimed at popularizing the principles of responsible consumption and production within the company, the UN Sustainable Development Agenda and their inclusion in the business strategy. Eco-educational programs and events, as well as the creation of business environmental responsibility programs are welcome in this nomination.
Legal entities are invited to participate – small and medium-sized businesses operating in the cities of Irkutsk, Ulan-Ude, as well as in the Central Ecological Zone of the Baikal Natural Territory. Priority sectors of the participants’ activities: waste treatment, trade, hotel services, catering services, education, agriculture, building construction, consulting, education, personal services.
The organizers will support the nominees throughout the application period: useful information about the nominations and tips for preparing applications are regularly published on the contest website. Even now, participants can ask the organizers and Jury members a question through the feedback form on the contest page.
You can apply until November 10 inclusive. The maximum grant amount for each of the three nominations will be 335 thousand rubles. The winners will be announced no later than December 6, 2021. You can learn more about the application template, the composition of the Jury and the Regulations on the competition on the website.