California Climate Cup

Construction Climate Challenge Supports Innovation through California Climate Cup

Created: July 8, 2019. Updated: July 8, 2019.

The Construction Climate Challenge, hosted by Volvo Construction Equipment, and Volvo Group North America recently sponsored the California Climate Cup, a competition to promote innovative startup entrepreneurs whose companies address climate resilience and carbon reduction measures.

The California Climate Cup spotlighted startups during competitions in Los Angeles, San Francisco and Sacramento. Those selected to compete were categorized by business focus including Clean and Smart Grid, Energy/Transportation Nexus and Zero Emissions Transportation.

The Construction Climate Challenge sponsored the program, along with Volvo Group, to build stronger relationships with California-based stakeholders. The purpose of the Construction Climate Challenge is to promote sustainability throughout the construction industry value chain and provide funding for environmental research.

“Collaboration is crucial to accelerate climate solution innovations through the value chain and across industries, as well as with academia and policymakers,” said Elin Svanström, co-founder of Construction Climate Challenge.

About 100 innovators competed before judges, including some judges from the Volvo Group. Competitors were scored on several parameters, including innovation, deployment, scalability, carbon impact and climate resilience. Nine finalists were chosen, three from each category, and competed before policymakers June 27. One winner was chosen from each category. They are:

  • Reginald Parker – Optimal Solar, Clean and Smart Grid
  • Joshua Aviv – SparkCharge, Energy / Transportation Nexus
  • Michael K. Opoku – SurgePower, Zero Emissions Transportation

From the three category winners, Joshua Aviv with SparkCharge was named the overall winner of the 2019 California Climate Cup. In addition to the recognition, Aviv received a cash prize of $25,000.


The California Climate Cup is arranged by The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) and New Energy Nexus (NEX). LACI is a nonprofit organization creating an inclusive green economy by unlocking innovation through working with startups to accelerate the commercialization of clean technologies, transforming markets through partnerships with policymakers, innovators and market leaders in transportation, energy and sustainable cities; and enhancing communities through workforce development, pilots and other programs. NEX is a global organization that supports the next wave of entrepreneurs with funds, programs, and connections that reflect emerging trends in the clean energy economy.