2020 Zayed Sustainability Prize expands focus
Since the Zayed Sustainability Prize was established in 2008, winners have had a direct and indirect impact on the lives of more than 307 million people around the world, contributing significantly towards reducing global carbon dioxide emissions. They have also saved 1.2 billion MW of clean energy, while expanding energy access to 27.5 million people in some of the poorest communities in Africa and Asia.
The prize, which has expanded its coverage, is now open to organisations and high schools that have innovative and inspiring projects or solutions that demonstrate sustainability in energy, water, food or health. The annual prize awards US$600,000 to the winning organisation in each of these four categories to help them advance their innovative work. It also rewards high schools proposing sustainability education projects in these four areas, with six winning high schools from different global regions winning US$100,000 each.
Local outreach partners provide support for entrants
To support applicants from the Pacific region, the prize has an Oceania outreach partner to assist organisations and high schools in developing their entries, a service offered free of charge.
The Melbourne-based outreach partner, Business Outlook and Evaluation, invites pioneers from around the region to be part of a growing community of innovators, committed to developing sustainability solutions that empower and enhance communities.
The Zayed Sustainability Prize was originally established in 2008 by the United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) leadership as the Zayed Future Energy Prize. The award was inspired by the sustainability legacy of the UAE’s founding father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.
Expansion of the prize
In 2019 the Zayed Sustainability Prize evolved from its focus on renewable energy to recognise organisations that demonstrate innovative, impactful and inspirational solutions in the areas of sustainable health, food, energy and water. These categories align with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, reflecting the most pressing sustainability challenges, thereby offering the greatest socio-economic impact on the lives of people around the world.
The prize maintains the Global High Schools category, which has been inspiring and enabling sustainability leadership among high school students around the world.
2019 prize winners
Ten innovative organisations and schools were recognised at the 2019 awards ceremony in Abu Dhabi. The prize was presented by His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, and His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai.
The organisations and schools demonstrated effective, meaningful outcomes in their focus areas. We Care Solar received the Health award for its Solar Suitcase, a portable maternity device to assist with childbirth and related medical services in off-grid rural areas. The unit brings together light, foetal monitoring and communications equipment and has already helped 1.8 million people by assisting doctors, midwives and medical professionals by providing emergency obstetric care across 3325 health facilities in 27 African countries.
Sanku, the winner in the Food category, was recognised for its flour-fortification machines that equip and incentivise small-scale, local millers to fortify their flour with nutrients using innovative technology. Sanku has currently installed 150 fortification machines in flour mills across five East African countries, impacting the lives of almost one million people daily by providing safer and healthier food sources.
BBOXX, an energy solutions provider, was recognised in the Energy category for its plug-and-play solar device, offering users an on-grid experience in an off-grid setting. BBOXX has installed over 160,000 solar home systems across Africa, South America and the Pacific region, connecting over 675,000 people with clean, affordable energy solutions and offsetting an approximate 87,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions each year.
ECOSOFTT was the winner of the Water prize, awarded for its decentralised community water management standard, which outlines a set of solutions for source management, water use, water recycling and discharge. It has implemented over 50 projects in five countries and provided more than 200,000 people access to clean water, sanitation and hygiene.
Two regional schools were finalists in the Global High Schools category: Lowanna College in Victoria was nominated for its fun and engaging approach to sustainability, which included establishing a student leadership program for sustainability, the installation of a solar array and a pellet mill, as well as an agricultural program. Fiordland College, located in Te Anau, New Zealand, was nominated for its energy park, integrating solar, water and wind energy-generating, culturally inspired sculptures.
Submissions are open until 30 May 2019. Winners will be announced in January 2020 at Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week.
For more information, visit www.zayedsustainabilityprize.com/en.
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