Abu Dhabi-UAE: 16 April 2013 – A delegation from the Zayed Future Energy Prize, the world's preeminent award for innovation in renewable energy and sustainability, is currently on a visit to Japan to raise awareness about the scope and reach of the Prize and draw increased participation for its 2014 edition.
The delegation was supported by the Institute of Energy Economics (IEEJ) in Tokyo and participated in a workshop arranged by the Institute on 14 April.
Dr Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, Director General of the Zayed Future Energy Prize, said: “With Japan being at the forefront of innovation and the clean technology industry, it is a key constituency for the Prize. From a booming solar PV industry to energy efficient vehicles, Japan has demonstrated strong capabilities in leading the renewable energy movement. We would like to join forces with innovators in Japan and encourage them to submit for the Prize so we can foster and encourage these technologies.”
The workshop included a presentation by Dr Nawal Al-Hosany, Director of the Zayed Future Energy Prize on the Prize and its categories to an audience comprising top-tier Japanese organizations. In her talk, Dr Al-Hosany explained the mandate of the Prize and explained the submission process to attendees.
Taking the initiative forward to raise greater awareness about the Prize among Japanese organizations and entrepreneurs in the renewable energy sector, the delegation is set to meet with relevant entities and high schools in Kyoto as well.
Inviting participation to the Global High Schools category, Dr Al Jaber added: “The Global High Schools Prize was created to reward and motivate young people to incorporate renewable energy and sustainability in their schools. The category represents the aspirations of the future generation towards sustainability, and as such is crucial to creating the right foundation for a resilient tomorrow.”
The delegation's tour of Japan comes at a time when the Asian country's energy sector has witnessed a massive transformation and renewable energy is increasingly viewed as a critical energy source for the future. Across Japan, local governments and communities have mobilized efforts to advance renewable energy. According to a Ren21 report, Japan's wind, solar, biomass, and geothermal power capacity totaled 11.3 GW towards the end of 2011, with PV accounting for the largest share (estimated at 43 per cent) followed by biomass, wind, and geothermal power.
The 2010 winner of the Large Corporation category, Toyota Motor Corporation used its prize fund of US$ 1.5 million to create a scholarship fund for Masdar Institute students as part of the auto maker's endeavor to invest back into the Japanese community.
As part of the outreach campaign in Asia, the Zayed Future Energy Prize will be engaging in various global meetings in India, Korea and China over the coming months. The strategy has successfully contributed to increasing submissions and nominations by 300 percent over the past five years.
Submissions for the sixth edition of 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.
The Zayed Future Energy Prize is open to applicants in the categories of large corporation, small and medium enterprise (SME), non-governmental organization (NGO), the individual lifetime achievement and global high schools. Launched in 2008, the Prize has gained global recognition and built a strong reputation as the most influential award in the renewable energy and sustainability community. The platform boasts industry experts, academics, world and thought leaders as part of its Review and Selection Committee, and Jury. In five years, the Prize has rewarded 21 innovators and impacted communities across the world.