In 2008, Mexico followed in the environmental footsteps of cities like Boston and London in the creation of the Cleantech Challenge Mexico (CTCM). Cleantech Challenge Mexico is a tournament of sorts that was originally initiated in Nairobi, Kenya. The competition helps bring green entrepreneurs together in order to instigate real change and environmental consciousness on issues facing our earth. Cleantech Challenge Mexico gives people the opportunity to present business proposals and the winners are then provided funding for their projects. Cleantech projects compete for $30 million in investment to start out their ventures. Dr. Luis Aguirre-Torres, the CEO and President of GreenMomentum,Inc. stated, “After the 2008 financial crisis, we started the Cleantech Challenge Mexico in order to directly contribute to the reactivation of Mexico’s economy.”
Cleantech Challenge Mexico is currently in its third year and is supported by many influential international organizations including USAID, UNIDO, and the Environmental Resource Management. Cleantech Challenge Mexico sees a variety of projects in the realm of recycling, sustainable manufacturing, and the fabrication of biodegradable products. All of these moves towards environmental awareness are vital for Mexico’s growing international prominence and domestic economy. The general director of Impulso Verde A.C. and co-organizer of the Cleantech Challenge Mexico 2012, Rafael Carmona explained, “The Cleantech Challenge Mexico has consolidated itself as a reference in Mexico’s green industry , creating a community of entrepreneurs that share the same vision.”
One of the most important successes of the Cleantech Challenge Mexico was the creation of the Carbon Diversion Latin America project. Carbon Diversion Latin America is dedicated to using waste material from certain tequila manufacturing factories and turning this waste into biomass.