Pioneers delivering an inclusive, sustainable future.

Ashden Awards finalists: UK pioneers tackle urgent climate challenges.


Posted By:

Craig Burnett


Climate charity Ashden has revealed the finalists for its 2023 awards – pioneers delivering an inclusive, sustainable future.

Three of eight award categories focus on the UK. Finalists from London to Liverpool are changing our relationship with nature and delivering the new technologies and funding models essential for reaching net zero.

The Ashden Award for Future Farmers backs pioneers developing skills for sustainable land management. Agriculture is responsible for 10% of UK Greenhouse Gas Emissions. But a growing number of consumers are interested in how their food is produced, and new rules are to set to channel government subsidies to farmers who work more sustainably.

The Ashen Award for Energy Innovation will reward an organisation with the potential to create large-scale impact. The key drivers of UK energy use include our homes – 19 million properties need upgrading to become more energy efficient by 2035. Taking on this challenge will create work, tackle fuel poverty and social inequality.

Finally, the Ashden Award for Nature Recoverers celebrates inclusive, community-focused adaptation initiatives. Restoring and protecting waterways and green spaces will lessen the impact of extreme weather – such as the record-breaking heat of 2022. Projects delivered with local people also boost health and wellbeing, and can be a gateway for more of us to get involved in climate action.

Government and funders must back positive vision for net zero UK

Dr Stephen Hall, Head of Awards at Ashden, said: “Our finalists are boundary-pushing pioneers cutting emissions and restoring nature. Crucially, they show how green jobs and community projects can drive a just transition and more equal society.

“This blows apart the ridiculous idea that net zero will make us all worse off. Politicians should put our finalists and other trailblazers at the heart of inclusive, ambitious plans for a sustainable future.

“They are taking on urgent national challenges, like upgrading homes and changing our relationship with the environment. But they can’t do it alone – investment and sympathetic policies are absolutely essential.”

The 2023 Ashden Awards also feature five categories focused on energy access and natural climate solutions in the Global South. Discover them here [LINK].

The 2023 Ashden Awards: UK finalists

Ashden Award for Energy Innovation
Accelerating the UK’s net zero journey

Supported by Impax Asset Management

The Housing Associations’ Charitable Trust

Originating carbon credits to unlock funds to support UK homes in need of retrofitting.


tepeo’s Zero Emission Boiler (ZEB®) is a plug-n-play replacement for existing fossil fuel boilers, that works with a hot water tank to deliver low carbon and low cost home heating in the UK.

Ashden Award for Local Nature Recoverers
Celebrating inclusive, community-focused adaptation initiatives.

Supported by the Lund Trust, a charitable fund of Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin

Thames 21/Enfield Council

Working with local residents, this collaboration has restored rivers and created new ponds, woods and wetlands to build climate resilience in north London.

Photo: BrookERS volunteers V.Midwinter and Eamonn Cannon during a volunteering session to help clear the river in Edmonton, Enfield. Thames21 is working with Enfield Council and the community to restore the borough’s rivers. The volunteering sessions offer the chance to connect with nature, get physically active, meet people and make a positive difference to local areas. Credit: Josh Caius / Ashden

Liverpool City Council

40 URBAN GreenUP projects range from green walls and rain gardens to mobile forests – with 120,000 residents benefiting from the work.

Ashden Award for Future Farmers
Developing skills and training for sustainable land management

Supported by Garfield Weston Foundation


Not for profit showing regenerative agriculture in action, and working to transform attitudes to food and farming.

Black Mountain College

Supports climate action and adaptation. Vocational courses teach regenerative approaches to land and woodland management, and are taught in nature, with a focus on creating positive change in the region.


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