LUMS Signs Contract with HIMA^Verte
A contracted signing ceremony was held between LUMS and HIMA^Verte at LUMS on December 22, 2021, which was facilitated by the Office of Research. The project presented at the meeting focuses on a solar energy system, managed through micro-grids, which allow peer-to-peer sharing of surplus energy. These micro-grids have been designed and are to be installed in the southern region of Punjab. The three major partners involved in the execution and research of this project are Pilio, a UK-based energy and environmental services company, HIMA^Verte, and LUMS—who will be responsible for on-site monitoring in the first six months after deployment of said micro-grids.
All attending members were welcomed and introduced by Mr. Nauman Ahmad Zaffar, Associate Professor, LUMS, after which the ceremony officially proceeded. The project was introduced and its performance was shared with the attendees. Plans for site visits were also discussed.
The Pilio Group, UK provides energy and environmental services to help businesses transition to a net positive impact on the environment. Pilio is also involved with initiatives with the UK fashion industry to improve the cotton supply chain and has previously worked with notable partners such as Lush Cosmetics and Blenheim Palace, to achieve their sustainability goals. HIMA^Verte too is a social enterprise partnership firm in Pakistan, involved in clean energy initiatives such as energy efficiency and solar programs. The company already supplies recycled cotton handmade paper to a number of fashion brands in the country. HIMA^Verte has partnered with Pilio to manage this project.
The project is significant due to its innovative approach to design a sustainable business model that allows businesses to fund clean energy alternatives and is mutually beneficial to investors as well as producers. The main feature of the project is the “Climate Inset Scheme” which focuses on carbon-insetting within the cotton supply chain. The first one-year phase of the project funded by Innovate UK is to develop a business plan whereby UK based fast-fashion brands can provide subsidy funding for Pakistani farmers who grow some form of sustainable cotton. The subsidy will enable the provision of clean energy solutions such as solar energy by absorbing the upfront capital costs.
Dr. Tariq Jadoon, Provost LUMS, represented the university at the event. He was accompanied by Dr. Hassan Abbas Khan, Associate Professor LUMS, who is leading the project and Mr. Nauman Ahmad Zaffar. Mr. Ali Habib, Managing Partner at HIMAˆVerte attended the ceremony along with Mr. Muhammad Salman Zaffar who is the Head of Energy & Renewables at HIMA^Verte Consulting. Mr. Sajjad Ali Khan and Amna Shahab joined them in the capacity of project manager and environmental consultant for the project. Catherine Bottrill, co-founder of Pilio UK joined in via Zoom, while Mr. Ali Amjad convened the meeting as WWF Pakistan’s representative. Dr. Mahjabeen Abidi-Habib was also welcomed on board as an advisor for gender equity and social inclusivity through the course of the project.