Abu Dhabi-UAE: 27 May, 2013 – Zayed Future Energy Prize, the world’s preeminent award for innovation in renewable energy and sustainability, has signed a partnership agreement with New York based Green School Alliance (GSA), aiming to strengthen submissions in the Global High Schools category for the 2014 edition of the Prize.
The GSA is a global network uniquely created by schools for schools and is tasked with empowering K-12 (primary and secondary education) schools to lead the transformation to global environmental sustainability.
According to the agreement, GSA and the Zayed Future Energy Prize will work in partnership to grow the green school movement worldwide, GSA will engage its network to encourage submissions in the Global High Schools category for the 2014 edition of the Prize and support the on-going communication and sustainability progress of submitting schools. In turn, Zayed Future Energy Prize will encourage Global High Schools Prize applicants, as well as previous winners and finalists, to join the GSA Network.
“The Global High Schools category underscores the mandate of the Prize – to encourage and reward sustainability practice among the next generation for the purpose of shaping a better future for all. Through this category, we hope to inspire and motivate students across the world to acquire a greater understanding of and involvement in renewable energy and sustainability efforts,” said Dr Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, Director General of the Zayed Future Energy Prize.
“Investing in the sustainable future of the next generations comprises the crux of the strategy put forth by the wise leadership of the United Arab Emirates – a strategy that is rooted in the legacy left to us by our late founding father, Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan,” added Dr Al Jaber.
The Global High Schools prize category was introduced by the Prize in 2012, as part of the UAE’s commitment to the UN Secretary General’s ‘Sustainable Energy for All’ initiative, which seeks to double renewable energy and energy efficiency as well as to ensure universal energy access by 2030.
The Global High Schools prize awards US$100,000 to one school from each of five geographic regions--the Americas, Europe, Africa, Asia and Oceania - based on proposals that address one or more of the Sustainable Energy for All targets.
“Sustainable solutions are fundamental to protecting our shared future. The Green Schools Alliance understands that we must support schools that are preparing the next generation for 21st century leadership,” said Margaret Watson, GSA’s Founder and President. “Through GSA’s partnership with the Zayed Future Energy Prize, schools worldwide can become part of a growing network, cooperating across boundaries to set and meet sustainability goals, share their best practices, and become global leaders in their own communities.”
The GSA network is represented by sustainability coordinators -- faculty, staff, students, administrators and others -- working together to resolve environmental and climate challenges. GSA member schools share and implement sustainable best practices and promote connections between schools, communities and the environments that sustain them. GSA does this through offering programs, exchanging resources, and creating peer-to-peer forums. Uniquely guided by member schools’ goals and vision, the GSA network helps other schools to set and meet their sustainability goals, aggregate and quantify progress, coordinate governance, operations and curriculum to advance sustainability and connect the youth to nature.
Submissions for the sixth edition of the Prize opened on 4 March, 2013 and will close on 5 August, 2013. Winners will be announced at the Zayed Future Energy Prize awards ceremony scheduled for 20 January, 2014, as part of the annual Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week.