The Earthshot Prize on Friday, September 17, 2021, announced its first- ever shortlist of 15 finalists, each with a chance of winning £1 million to support their innovative environmental solutions to the greatest challenges facing the planet.
One of the 15 finalists is Reeddi Capsules of Nigeria, chosen for its innovative solar-powered energy capsules that makes electricity affordable and accessible in energy-poor communities.
Prince William, creator of the Earthshot Prize, said: “Over half a century ago, President Kennedy’s ‘Moonshot’ programme united millions of people around the goal of reaching the moon. Inspired by this, The Earthshot Prize aims to mobilise collective action around our unique ability to innovate, problem solve and repair our planet.
“I am honoured to introduce the 15 innovators, leaders, and visionaries who are the first ever Finalists for The Earthshot Prize. They are working with the urgency required in this decisive decade for life on Earth and will inspire all of us with their optimism in our ability to rise to the greatest challenges in human history.”
Launched by Prince William and The Royal Foundation in October 2020, The Earthshot Prize is said to be the most prestigious global environment prize in history. Like President John F. Kennedy’s ‘Moonshot’ did almost 60 years ago, the Prize aims to unleash an unprecedented wave of innovation and leadership to tackle the challenges posed by climate change and the threats to our oceans, air, and land.
The Prize has been described as an urgent call to action to the world and aims to turn the current pessimism surrounding environmental issues into optimism, by championing inspiring leadership and helping to scale incredible cutting-edge solutions. It will discover 50 winners over 10 years with the power to repair the planet.
A global project, The Earthshot Prize has been developed by The Royal Foundation, which convened a diverse nominator coalition of more than 200 people and organisations
around the world from every continent, a distinguished Expert Advisory Panel, and The Earthshot Prize Council comprising influential individuals committed to championing positive environmental action.
Five of these 15 Finalists will be awarded The Earthshot Prize and will win £1 million in Prize funding for the best solutions of the five Earthshot goals: “Protect and Restore Nature”; “Clean our Air”; “Revive our Oceans”; “Build a Waste-free World”; and “Fix our Climate”.
The winners will be announced during an awards ceremony on October 17 from London’s Alexandra Palace, broadcast in the UK on BBC One and globally on Discovery.
The inaugural 15 Finalists were assessed by the Expert Advisory Panel of scientific, academic, and subject-matter leaders. Each of the Finalist’s solutions excelled in the rigorous screening process and were assessed on their potential to create game-changing impact around the world, their ability to help us reach our Earthshot goals while also positively impacting people, communities and the natural world.
The other Earthshot Prize Finalists for 2021 are:
- Pole Pole Foundation, Democratic Republic of Congo (An inspiring community-led model of conservation that protects gorillas and local livelihoods),
- The Republic of Costa Rica (A pioneering scheme paying local citizens to restore natural ecosystems that has led to a revival of the rainforest),
- Restor, Switzerland (A ground-breaking online platform connecting and empowering local conservation projects),
- The Blue Map App, China (China’s first public environmental database enabling citizens to hold polluters to account),
- Takachar, India (A pioneering technology to create profitable products from agricultural waste and put a stop to the burning of crops),
- Vinisha Umashankar, India (A 14-year-old innovator and activist who has designed a solar-powered ironing cart with the potential to improve air quality across India),
- Coral Vita, Bahamas (A truly cutting-edge breakthrough in coral farming that can restore our world’s dying coral reefs),
- Living Seawalls, Australia (Innovative and replicable seawall panels bringing marine life back to coastal sea defences),
- Pristine Seas, US (An unprecedented global conservation programme protecting 6.5 million square km of the world’s ocean),
- The City of Milan Food Waste Hubs, Italy (A city-wide initiative that has dramatically cut waste while tackling hunger),
- Sanergy, Kenya (A circular sanitation solution that converts human waste into safe products for local farmers),
- WOTA BOX, Japan (A tiny water treatment plant that turns 98% of wastewater into clean water),
- AEM Electrolyser, Thailand/Germany/Italy (An ingenious green hydrogen technology developed to transform how we power our homes and buildings), and
- SOLbazaar, Bangladesh (The world’s first peer-to-peer energy exchange network in a country on the front-line of climate change).
All 15 Finalists will receive tailored support and resources from The Earthshot Prize Global Alliance Members, an unprecedented network of private sector businesses around the world who will help scale their solutions to realise an even greater impact with their ground-breaking work.