Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Philippine-based water project wins BBC World Challenge

Manila Bulletin

LONDON — A Philippine-based water project emerged as winner in the recent 2010 BBC World Challenge, a competition that recognizes and rewards small businesses from around the world that tackle environmental and social issues.

This year’s winner is Alternative Indigenous Development Foundation Inc (AIDFI), a non-governmental organization based in Bacolod City, which won the top prize – a US$20,000 grant from Shell – for its hydraulic ram pump project The Only Way is Up.

Using the river’s flow to push water uphill without any other energy source, AIDFI has introduced the pump to 170 remote villages in the Philippines.

Plans are now afoot to spread the benefits of the ram pump far and wide among communities living
in mountainous regions.

Commenting, Auke Idzenga from AIDFI said: “Winning the World Challenge is a very special moment for AIDFI, the Philippines, and myself. With winning the competition I am confident we will be able to access additional funding and with it transfer the technology behind the ram pump to other countries worldwide. We are very grateful to Shell for awarding us this grant.”

Malcolm Brinded, Shell’s Executive Director of the Upstream International Business, who presented the winner’s cheque said: "Access to energy is critical to driving development and improving people's quality of life. This year's winner of World Challenge, a hydraulic pump delivering water to remote villages, could not be a clearer demonstration of that. At Shell, we are committed to using new technology to deliver a lower carbon energy future, and it's exciting to see that same ambition in action in the World Challenge competition."

Now in its sixth year, World Challenge is more popular than ever with more than 167,000 people around the world voting online for their favourite projects at www.theworldchallenge.co.uk. This year 800 nominations were received from over 70 countries, from which 12 finalists were selected.

World Challenge has been supported by Shell since 2004 and is run in association with BBC World News and Newsweek. Since its inception, Shell has provided financial grants to 15 projects across the globe.

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