Thirty candidates making an impact in health, food, energy, water and at schools, will compete to win 10 awards and millions of dirhams in prize money at this year’s Zayed Sustainability Prize.
Officials will announce the 10 winners during a ceremony at the 2022 Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week in January.
Finalists will be judged in five categories – health, food, energy, water and global high schools.
The $3 million annual prize supports green projects that help the environment.
This year, 4,000 applications were received from 151 countries – a 68.5 per cent increase in entries compared to the previous cycle.
The jury comprises former heads of state, government ministers and international business figures.
They held a virtual meeting to review shortlisted submissions that were made in August.
“As the UAE celebrates its jubilee this year, the prize aligns perfectly with the Principles of the Fifty,” said Dr Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology and Director General of the Zayed Sustainability Prize.
“The prize has already improved the lives of millions around the world and will continue to expand as a force for good that contributes to a more prosperous, equitable and sustainable world, in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.”
The chairman of the jury and former president of the Republic of Iceland, Olafur Ragnar Grimsson, said: “The innovation and diversity demonstrated in this year’s applications is a testament to the Prize’s ongoing ability to engage sustainability pioneers, worldwide, while offering a platform and stepping stone for transformation and added human impact”.
This year, finalists addressed and proposed solutions for global challenges.
Most entries focused on the resilience of the ecosystem and affordability of solutions using technologies such as Artificial Intelligence and the Internet of Things to drive impact.
In the health, food, energy and water categories, each winner receives $600,000 (Dh2.2 million). The global high schools category has six winners – with each receiving up to $100,000.
Since its launch in 2008, the prize has, directly and indirectly, transformed the lives of more than 352 million people in 150 countries.