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Reviewed 14 March 2011

IPO Green Channel nominated for Climate Week Award

The Intellectual Property Office's (IPO) Green Channel for fast-tracking green patent applications has been nominated for a Climate Week Award External Link under the category of Best Initiative by a Government or Statutory Body. The IPO is one of four shortlisted finalists in this category and the winner will be announced on 21 March at the official Climate Week launch event.

The Green Channel was launched in May 2009. The scheme allows applicants to request fast-track processing for any patent where the invention has an environmental benefit. Since its launch, the IPO has accelerated over 350 applications through the scheme in technologies such as wind, solar and hydro power, as well as energy saving devices and vehicles.

The aim of the Green Channel is to help businesses get environmentally-sound technologies into the market place quickly by ensuring that they do not face undue delays in gaining patent protection. So far 74 patents have been granted under this scheme, in an average time of 8 months from acceleration request to grant. It usually takes an average of 2 - 3 years to grant a patent in the UK.

Intellectual Property Minister Baroness Wilcox said:

"I'd like to applaud the nomination of the Intellectual Property Office for a Climate Week Award. These awards are an important new opportunity to recognise the positive steps being taken by many organisations across Britain to combat climate change.

If we are to reduce global warming, it's important that we encourage innovation in environmentally friendly technology. The Green Channel for fast tracking patents on green technologies was the first initiative of its kind anywhere in the world and provides practical help to businesses in developing green technology and bringing it to the consumer as quickly as possible."

The IPO's Green Channel was the first such initiative anywhere in the world, but since its launch similar schemes have been introduced by other countries including the United States, Korea and Japan.

Editors notes

  • The Intellectual Property Office (IPO) is within the Department for Business, Innovation, and Skills (BIS) and is responsible for the national framework of Intellectual Property rights, comprising patents, designs, trade marks and copyright.
  • Its role is to help manage an IP system that encourages innovation and creativity, balances the needs of consumers and users, promotes strong and competitive markets and is the foundation of the knowledge based economy.
  • It operates in a national and an international environment and its work is governed by national and international law, including various international treaties relating to Intellectual Property (IP) to which the United Kingdom is a party.
  • The Climate Week Awards celebrate the UK's most innovative, effective, and ambitious organisations, communities and individuals and their outstanding efforts to combat climate change.
  • They will be judged by a star panel including Lord Nicholas Stern (author of the Stern Report), Mary Robinson (the former President of Ireland), best-selling author Ian McEwan, environmental campaigner Tony Juniper, eco adventurer David de Rothschild, Eden Project founder Tim Smit, Met Office Chief Scientist Julia Slingo and Terry Tamminen, advisor on climate change to Arnold Schwarzenegger. Winners will be announced on 21 March.

    Climate Week Awards will be given for the following categories:
    - Climate Week Hero - in association with Tesco
    - Most Inspirational Leader - in association with Tesco
    - Most Inspirational Young Person - in association with Tesco
    - Best Community Initiative - in association with Aviva
    - Best Educational Initiative - in association with EDF Energy
    - Best Local Initiative - in association with Kelloggs
    - Best Initiative by a Small or Medium-Sized Business - in association with RBS
    - Best Technological Breakthrough - in association with Tesco
    - Best New Product - in association with Tesco
    - Best Initiative by a Governmental or Statutory Body - in association with Tesco
    - Best Initiative by a Public or Uniformed Service - in association with Tesco
    - Best Campaign - in association with Tesco
    - Best Event - in association with Tesco
    - Best Artistic Response - in association with Tesco

  • Please see Climate Week Awards External Link for more information.
  • Thousands of events, highlighting solutions to climate change, will be run by organisations across society, from the Met Office to Manchester United, the NHS to the National Trust, Government departments to GirlguidingUK.
  • Climate Week will be taking place on 21 - 27 March, Climate Week is a new national occasion backed by everyone from the Prime Minister to Sir Paul McCartney to showcase the many practical ways in which we can help combat climate change.
  • More information is available on the Climate Week External Link website.
  • For further information about the IPO or this Press Release, please contact IPO Press Officer Emma Griffiths on 020 7215 5982 or e-mail communications.

Date of release: 14 March 2011