Energy Start-Ups from Germany and Europe

Climate change can only be defeated by joining forces. Across Europe, startups are rising to the challenge and developing breakthrough solutions. From CO2 storage to green hydrogen to the circular economy, many technologies have the potential to revolutionize our energy production and contribute to a sustainable future for all. Here are some promising candidates.

When the circle closes - Circular IQ

The circular economy is driven by the idea that sustainability cannot be limited to single lines of business. All resources and production routes must be integrated into a sustainable economy, otherwise the next raw materials crisis is only a matter of time. The 3Rs: Reduce, Reuse and Recycle are decisive for this. In other words, the overall use of raw materials should be reduced, products should be used more frequently, and raw materials should become reusable. Circular IQ provides companies with tools to measure and make use of their own potential for more circular materials use. Circular IQ is now assisting more than 2000 companies from nearly 100 countries in this transition process.

Sustainable heating for industry - Heatrix

In the transition to renewable energy, we must not forget the heat sector alongside electricity. In industry, process heat accounts for a full 60 percent of total energy consumption. Heatrix is targeting energy-intensive industry and wants to completely decarbonize the supply of process heat. Instead of coal and gas, wind and sun are to provide the energy for high-temperature process heat. To this end, a modular solution is being developed that combines heat conversion and storage. This will make the supply of green heat competitive and cost-effective. This concept has also convinced the jury of the Start Up Energy Transition Awards: Heatrix is one of the 15 finalists among more than 400 applications.

Absorbing CO2 into the wall - IndiNature

There is also a lot of savings potential in the areas of construction and insulation, as the start-up IndiNature shows. It's not just a matter of insulating more energy-efficiently in the first place, but the insulating material itself becomes a CO2 reservoir. Bio-based materials and building products made from traditional crops are used for this purpose. The natural fibers not only contribute to the climate on a global scale, but also improve the indoor climate at home. Compared to synthetic insulating materials, natural materials can passively regulate humidity and temperature, and this also benefits the health of the occupants. IndiNature already operates on an industrial scale and considers itself a market leader. In January 2023, IndiNature successfully raised £2 million for its second funding phase.

Balancing fluctuations in renewables - volterion

A key challenge in the energy transition is the large-scale expansion of energy storage. Historically, our energy system has always had a highly centralized structure: A central power plant supplies extra-high voltage, which drops to surrounding consumers at lower grid levels. The switch to renewables is decentralizing our power grid. Wind and solar power not only deliver lower voltage than coal-fired power but also fluctuate throughout the day and year. One company working on the development of storage technologies that can compensate for these fluctuations is volterion, a spin-off of the Fraunhofer Institute for Environmental, Safety and Energy Technology.

Green hydrogen - Enapter

Green hydrogen is produced by the electrolysis of water using renewable energy sources. It can be used as a clean, renewable fuel for a variety of applications, including transportation and power generation. Several startups, such as Enapter, are working hard to develop cost-effective and efficient systems to produce green hydrogen. The introduction of green hydrogen has the potential to drastically reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and lead to a cleaner and more sustainable energy system.

In the fight against climate change, startups are the drivers of innovation. With the right incentives and policy support, innovation and new ideas can have a huge impact. So, let's be open to technological change and support these startups in their important work.

AuthorHannes Vogel


Hannes Vogel studied physics in Berlin and Stockholm. He has been involved in energy and sustainability issues for a long time, for example at the German Physical Society and the German UNESCO Commission. Since February 2023, he has been working as a consultant at Strategic Minds Company - a company that provides policy advice on climate and energy issues.