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Environmental Science Award 2017

Environmental Science Award 2017 was held in University of Latvia on March 24 and it was the eighth time when it happened. The aim of this event is to evaluate and appreciate teachers, scientists, non-governmental organisations for the actualising the environmental problems and promoting sustainable environmental science and education.

This year, not only four already known nominations were awarded: „The new environmental scientist”, „Environment science teacher”, „Environmental activist group”, „Environment scientist and university pedagogue”  but also „Bio-economy prize” was applied to an enterprise for developing an innovative product with high added value. The members of the jury from the Environmental Science and Education Council carefully examined every nominee in order to identify the best candidates for each nomination.

In the nomination „New environmental scientist,” first place was won by the researcher Aiga Barisa from Riga Technical University Institute of Energy Systems and Environment, who defended her PhD thesis „Modelling transition policies to a low-carbon road transport in Latvia by 2030” last year. Second place was shared by the researcher Anna Kubule from Riga Technical University Institute of Energy Systems and Environment and researcher and guest-assistant Kristine Valujeva from the Agricultural University of Latvia Department of Environmental Engineering and Water Management.

In category „Environmental scientist and university pedagogue” assistant professor Francesco Romagnoli from Riga Technical University Institute of Energy Systems and Environment won the first place, but his fellow researcher Jelena Pubule, won second place.

Biology, science and environmental education teacher and teacher of the methodological association Daiga Martinsone from Skriveri Andrejs Upitis Secondary School was awarded as the best environmental science teacher. Second place was shared by Ilga Verovkina – biology teacher in Valmiera Viesturs Secondary School and Inita Rulle – teacher in Saldus Secondary School.

The most points in category „Environmental activist group” was gained by association „Solis Dabā” („Step in Nature”), they are organising different kind of events, that are raising awareness about climate change, adaption to climate change and ecological and environmentally friendly lifestyle. Also in this category second place was shared by two organisations: Student association ”Šalkone” which was established to increase communication  about forests and their importance. Other nominee which got the prize was Ventspils Secondary School No. 4, for organising forest days for more than 10 years in a row. This event is for children and their families, they go and plant a forest all together and in that way they can learn a lot about the forest and all the processes in it.

For the first time in the history of the Environmental Science Awards, honour of „The Bio-economy Prize was awarded for the contribution to the development of a bio-economy by producing products with high added value. This prize was received by Latvijas Finieris AS for innovative products: the birch bark extract with a high content of betulin.

Let’s take inspiration from the winner’s progress to strengthen both the importance of the environmental science and public education to develop the economics.

  „Environmental Science Awards 2017” was organised by the Latvian Environmental Science and Education Council in cooperation with the Association of Latvian Environmental Science Students. Latvian Environmental Science and Education Council is coordinating and consulting crossectorial organization that makes decisions that have recommendatory nature in development of environmental science and education.  Award was supported by Riga Technical University Institute of Energy Systems and Environment, University of Latvia, Agricultural University of Latvia, Liepaja University, Rezekne Academy of Technologies, society “Nature Concerthall”, Ltd. “Ekodoma” and Ltd. “ZAAO”.

This event was organized by the University of Latvia and Riga Technical University Institute of Energy Systems and Environment, University of Latvia, Daugavpils University, Agricultural University of Latvia, Liepaja University and Rezekne Academy of Technologies.

Pictures from the event are available here:

Karina Balina

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