Indian Social Entrepreneur Selected as Finalist for Zayed Future Energy Prize 2010
The Zayed Future Energy Prize, a global annual award established to recognise achievements in the renewable energy industry, selected Amitabha Sadangi, CEO of International Development Enterprises India (IDEI), as a finalist for the successful deployment of low-cost irrigation technology to farmers in India. This technology, which has reached over one million farmers, has resulted in diesel savings of 533 million litres and a reduction in carbon emissions of 1.8 million tonnes.
Amitabha received his award of USD350,000 at an awards ceremony in Abu Dhabi from His Highness General Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces. Toyota Motor Corporation, which won the award, was presented with the grand prize of USD1.5 million, while another runner-up – Zhengrong Shi, Founder and CEO of Suntech Power Holdings Co. Ltd, China – was also awarded USD350,000.
The Zayed Future Energy Prize jury, which consisted of leading international renewable energy experts, selected Amitabha Sadangi as a finalist due to the widespread benefits his technology has provided across India, while promoting environmental conservation. The deployment of the irrigation technology has resulted in savings of 3146 million cubic litres of water and 417 million kilowatts of electricity. Overall, five million people have benefitted in terms of increased income security and environmental well-being.
On receiving the award, Amitabha Sadangi said: “I am honoured to have been selected as a finalist for the Zayed Future Energy Prize. IDEI has immersed itself into developing and implementing low-cost, environment-friendly technologies which are easy to use, thereby providing widespread benefits, and we are pleased that this has been recognised on an international platform.”Commenting on the winning entry, Dr. Sultan Al Jaber, Director General of the Zayed Future Energy Prize said: “The calibre of entries has been phenomenal and the jury had tough choices to make in narrowing the selection down to three finalists. The chosen finalists are recognised for their dedicated efforts towards creating a sustainable future for the world, and we are delighted to support them by providing a platform for global recognition and further innovation.”
All three finalists excelled when demonstrating innovation, long-term vision and leadership in addressing some of the world’s energy challenges and it is hoped that even more companies, NGOs, organisations and individuals will enter the 2011 Zayed Future Energy Prize when it opens in the spring. Toyota Motor Corporation was selected as the winner for its ground breaking fuel efficiency system of the third-generation Toyota Prius, the world’s first mass-produced hybrid vehicle. The original Prius was launched in 1997 in the last 13 years has saved around seven million tonnes of carbon dioxide from polluting the atmosphere due to its fuel efficient technology.The joint runner-up Zhengrong Shi, Founder and CEO of Suntech Power Holdings Company, was selected for the establishment of Suntech in September 2001 which has since grown to become the world's largest manufacturer of silicon solar modules. Shi has dedicated his efforts to making solar energy a viable alternative to traditional electricity and increasing its adoption across the globe. The Zayed Future Energy Prize was created in 2008 to recognize and inspire innovators in renewable energy from around the world and to honour of the legacy of the late Ruler of Abu Dhabi and founding father of the United Arab Emirates, His Highness Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.