Since June 2019, eight partners representing the entire construction value chain have joined the initiative to form the Sekoya industrial club, lending their expertise in carbon to promote carbon-free solutions. This has brought together several major groups in their sector: Covivio, Gerflor, GRDF, Legrand, Saint-Gobain and Vicat, along with the Union Sociale pour l’Habitat, which represents social housing organisations in France, and the Scientific and Technical Centre for Building (CSTB), the sector’s principal centre for research and expertise.
The first call for solutions was open until 26 September and invited startups, SMEs and MSBs to register their entries based around six themes: new mobilities, low-carbon design and building, circular economy, biodiversity and ecological engineering, renewable energies, and energy efficiency.
In three months, 57 solutions were submitted through the online platform. On Monday, 27 January, 10 preselected startups presented their innovations to the jury. Having deliberated, Eiffage, Impulse Partners and their partners announced the five winning startups:
Manufacturing and selling new professional acrylic paints made from more than 70% recycled materials recovered from worksites. Available in white and 13 other colours, the carbon footprint of these paints is 12 times smaller than that of traditional paint.
A digital marketplace dedicated to reusing building materials by bringing together professional buyers and sellers from the construction sector. The online platform is complemented by circular economy consulting services.
A biosourced roof panel, measuring one square metre and made from recycled cellulose fibres and vegetable resins. It is extremely light (3 kg/m2) and can be supplied in a wide range of shapes to imitate existing traditional materials or create unique modern profiles.
Recovering city rainwater using collection equipment composed of watertight window boxes and planted substrate, enabling the creation of a grid of buffer tanks with no need for heavy earthworks or alterations.
Developing integrated energy storage and energy cogeneration solutions for buildings and eco-districts wishing to meet their energy needs from local and renewable energy sources.
The other preselected startups in attendance were:
Electrical personal transport for people with reduced mobility, with an unconventional design part-way between a scooter and a powered wheelchair, using natural materials such as wood.
Developing concrete insulation blocks made from dense or lightweight aggregates, offering superior thermal performance.
Capturing CO2 from furnace fumes and purifying them for reinjection into the cement manufacturing process.
Ecologically certified subfloor insulation made from cellular glass, which can be installed quickly, removing the need for frost-proofing and foundation digging. This new building method is certified according to technical advice from the CSTB.
A carbon-negative procedure to create high-performance composite materials with a small carbon footprint. Made from stone and carbon fibre, these replace materials that consume large quantities of natural resources. Strong and long-lasting, they cut CO2 emissions tenfold.
This first call for solutions is an application of Sekoya’s vocation to identify low-carbon solutions and support their designers in implementing them on a large scale by including them in future tenders. These innovations are not exclusive; rather they contribute to shared sustainable development and promote interactions between all stakeholders in the sector. Further calls for solutions will be issued throughout the year, addressing carbon and climate themes in conjunction with our partners.
The Eiffage group is concerned about climate issues affecting the African continent, and especially Senegal, where we have been established for many years. We launched the Sekoya Africa initiative last September in Dakar with the first call for solutions.