By Modupe Gbadeyanka
The Zayed Future Energy Prize has officially achieved a GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS title for the ‘Largest environmental sustainability lesson’ announced on January 10.
A total of 282 students from across the UAE took part in the sustainability-themed lesson at The Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi, presented by Illac Angelo Diaz, Executive Director of Liter of Light, the non-profit winner of the Zayed Future Energy Prize in 2015.
The 30-minute lecture highlighted how young people around the world can help to reduce energy poverty while also challenging them to devise solutions that will bring about a more sustainable future.
The gathering also saw the assembly of 2,400 solar lanterns, arranged to create a unique light installation in tribute to Sheikh Zayed, the UAE’s founding father, the centenary of whose birth is being celebrated across the UAE in 2018.
The Zayed Future Energy Prize is the world’s preeminent renewable energy and sustainability prize, each year recognising outstanding contributions from companies, schools, non-profit groups and individuals. Philippines-based Liter of Light has provided affordable solar lighting to thousands of homes, schools and workplaces struck by natural disasters through its education and self-help programmes.
Dr Nawal Al-Hosany, Director of the Zayed Future Energy Prize, said: “Today’s record-breaking event is an inspirational way to mark the Year of Zayed and the 10-year anniversary of the Zayed Future Energy Prize, established in honour of Sheikh Zayed’s environmental legacy and vision.
“The last decade has seen the lives of millions of people positively impacted by the prize’s many winners, of whom Liter of Light is truly a shining example.
“Today’s gathering highlights the critical importance of youth in driving forward the renewable energy and sustainability conversation, and the power they have as change agents, now and for the future.”
Liter of Light has been a beacon of hope for schools and communities around the world, with a focus on developing community skills and local manufacturing that transcend borders.
The solar lanterns assembled by the students for the installation will come full circle and will be donated to Red Crescent, to be installed in the streets and homes of those who need it most.
Commenting on Liter of Light’s involvement in setting the record Diaz said: “Our youth are a tremendous source of energy and ideas in promoting sustainability and responsible action. Today’s event sends a powerful message of hope to young people around the UAE and the world about the difference they can make in addressing global sustainability challenges.”
Samer Khallouf, the Guinness World Records official adjudicator, confirmed today’s event as the Largest environmental sustainability lesson with the presentation of an official certificate to Dr Nawal Al Hosany.
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