On Monday 10th March, People's Postcode Lottery launched the Postcode Lottery Green Challenge 2014 at the London Science Museum. The event, attended by influential guests from academia, business and government, kicked off the world's largest international competition for green entrepreneurs and innovators. And, for the first time this year, a new Scholarship, specifically for British students, was announced in partnership with The Open University.

The Postcode Lottery Green Challenge offers up to €500,000 for the best green product or service that can make a sizeable contribution towards cutting carbon emissions. As part of the conditions of the Challenge, the product or service must be brought to market in two years and offer innovative, entrepreneurial and courageous solutions. In addition to this, runner-up prizes of €100,000 are available for two lucky applicants.

The event saw speeches from Baroness Verma, the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department of Energy and Climate Change, and Nick Christy, a former winner of the Green Challenge who presented his innovative 'Water Recycling Shower'.

The Postcode Lottery Green Challenge Scholarship offers four prospective and current postgraduate students at The Open University the opportunity to win the cost of their tuition fees, up to a maximum of £8,500 each. The Scholarship runs alongside the international Green Challenge competition and is geared towards developing the next generation of British entrepreneurs and innovators who are passionate about tackling climate change.

Baroness Verma, who is chairing the judging panel for the Postcode Lottery Green Challenge Scholarship, said, "In order to realise our green goals, we have to capture the imagination of young British innovators and this is a fantastic prize in order to do so. I would also urge Britain's vibrant community of green inventors and innovators to apply to the international Green Challlenge competition as this really could bring their idea to life and make a sizeable contribution towards cutting carbon emissions."

Clara Govier, Head of Charities at People's Postcode Lottery, said, "It's such a pleasure to have been part of the formal launch of the Postcode Lottery Green Challenge and Scholarship. The London Science Museum was a perfect location for the launch given it houses such a rich history of innovations and inventions in the modern world.

"These two very unique competitions offer tremendous opportunities for people who want to play their role in tackling climate change. I very much look forward to receiving a diverse range of applications to both the international competition and Scholarship and announcing the winners this coming summer."

The Postcode Lottery Green Challenge has been running since 2007 and received high profile endorsements from former president Bill Clinton and entrepreneur Richard Branson, who chaired last year's judging panel.

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