Work with Shell to reduce the amount of carbon in the atmosphere as part of the New Energy Challenge

Collaboration with Shell Deadline passed


“Tomorrow’s energy system needs new thinking, new technologies and new approaches.”



The New Energy Challenge is a startup competition, jointly organized by Shell, Rockstart, YES!Delft and Unknown Group. The competition is designed for entrepreneurs in Europe and Israel who are developing advanced technologies and disruptive solutions that could be vital in accelerating the energy transition and will shape the low-carbon energy infrastructure of the future.


From nature-based solutions (NBS) to carbon capture technologies, to digitalizing the grid, finding clever ways to reduce the amount of carbon in the atmosphere is essential to limiting global warming by 2100, as decreed by the Paris Agreement. This is especially true for heavy-emitting industries, which need to both reduce carbon emissions and capture carbon to meet climate targets.


Carbon capture, storage and utilization are often considered too costly and inefficient to be used at scale, but scientific and technological innovations are rapidly changing this. By working together to develop and scale affordable and efficient carbon reduction, capture, and utilization technologies, we can help all industries to meet their climate targets, create more circular economies and keep the planet’s warming within safe limits.


This year’s NEC aims to help innovative entrepreneurs and scientists to get their solutions to market and bring our societies closer to carbon neutrality– and more carbon-useful.

The deadline for this Challenge has passed, please check out our other Challenges

The Challenge

The New Energy Challenge 2022 is a competition for start-ups and scale-ups and is bringing together cutting-edge innovators from Europe and Israel to make energy systems not just carbon-neutral but also “carbon-useful” – and at scale.

The winning companies will be given the opportunity to connect with investors and experts, unlocking the knowledge, contacts, funding, and support needed to scale their business and help them to drive change in the energy system.

Carbon capture

Innovations of interest include: traditional carbon capture technologies like post and pre-combustion, alternative firing (e.g. Oxyfuel, hydrogen firing), and carbon removal (including Negative Emissions Technologies like Direct Air Capture (DACCS) technologies and carbon sequestration through nature-based solutions like bacteria/algae, rock, peat, bog, kelp, oceans, and trees).

Carbon utilization

Innovations of interest include those creating carbon demand in the agriculture, manufacturing, and construction industries – such as for biofuels, proteins, nanotubes, proteins, plastics, and chemicals, and so on.

Carbon offsetting and trading

Innovations of interest include: carbon marketplaces, measurement, and traceability solutions that can keep track of offsetting initiatives.


Innovations of interest include digital solutions that aim to measure and reduce emissions from current operations, such as digital twins, predictive maintenance, flare management, digital grids, value chain integration and green data centres.

What's in it for you

  • Collaboration with Shell

  • Admission to Shell GameChanger program

  • Training and coaching designed by Rockstart and YES!Delft

  • One-on-one meetings with Shell experts

  • Access to Shell, Rockstart, Unknown Group and YES!Delft's network and experts

Additional Criteria

  • Start-ups must be in TRL 2-5 stage, up until and including seed stage

  • Scale-ups must be in TRL 6-9 stage with early revenues, market validation by pilot(s), Series A and higher

  • Have a solution that is focused on the transition to a sustainable energy future, with an explanation on how Shell connects to this solution

  • Have a unique scalable product or service

  • Be a registered company in Europe or Israel (equivalent to the Dutch B.V. (eg UK – Ltd., Germany – GmbH).

  • Have at least 2 founders


1 May 2022

Deadline to Apply

The deadline for applications is the 1st of May, at midnight (UTC+2).
The Top 20 finalists will be announced at the end of May.
13 - 24 June 2022

Deep-Dive Interviews

Selected startups will be invited for deep-dive online interviews taking place mid-June.
Beginning July


The Top 10 finalists will be announced in July and invited for the Finals Week.
Beginning November

Finals Week and Pitch Event

All 10 finalists will pitch in front of a jury of experts who will select the winners of the New Energy Challenge 2022 taking place beginning of November.
Deadline passed

The deadline for this Challenge has passed, please check out our other Challenges