With more than 170 participating countries and over 1500 project submissions annually the Energy Globe Award is today's most prestigious environmental prize worldwide. It distinguishes projects regionally, nationally and globally that conserve resources such as energy or utilize renewable or emission-free sources. Award ceremonies are held all over the world. Prominent personalities as well as Energy Globe Ambassadors in 90 countries support the mission of Energy Globe. The activities of Energy Globe attract worldwide media attention - international TV stations report each year with approximately 1,000 hours of broadcasting time. The aim of the Energy Globe is to raise global attention on sustainable, everywhere applicable environmental solutions and to motivate people to also become active in this area.
National ENERGY GLOBE Award 2016
Currently, the world is facing several environmental challenges that ask for technological innovations to deal with. Due to climate change average temperatures are increasing, as well as the frequency and intensity of droughts. As a result, algal blooms within freshwater lakes occur more often and are more severe. These types of algae represent a group of bacteria, known as cyanobacteria that give rise to a distinctly foul odor and are also known to produce toxins. These toxins can cause various discomforts and illnesses. As well as causing skin irritations they are even suspected to be involved in the occurrence of liver cancer. Each year, numerous lakes are forced to close for all recreational use due to the growth of blue-green algae. For these reasons among others, the drinking water and agriculture industry are in need of a more efficient water use and water treatment process. The use of harmful chemicals such as copper and/or chlorine are in this context more and more unwanted, as they are harmful to the environment and often produce unwanted side effects. Currently chemical and biological additives, ultrasound treatment and aeration are methods to control algae. While for large water bodies, the methods mentioned being used currently are labor-intensive and not practical to apply and maintain, while at the same time chemical treatments can also adversely affect the environment. The project ClearWaterPMPC has developed an effective way to monitor water quality, keep track of algae levels when necessary with using ultrasound technology on an automated buoy to kill algae and prevent blooms. The MPC-Buoy is a solar-powered platform that combines continuous water quality monitoring, web-based software, and ultrasonic technology to effectively control harmful algal blooms in large water surfaces, such as lakes and drinking water reservoirs. About 50 buoys have been installed in lakes, reservoirs, dams and other water bodies in Austria, Azerbaijan, Chile, Spain, the UK, Canada, the US and Colombia. The MPC-Buoy can be used in every body of water in the world that suffers from algae. It eliminates up to 90% of the current algae and prevents the growth of new algae without disturbing the ecosystem. By installing the MPC-Buoy a chemical-free solution for algae control can be provided, that makes the use of possibly harmful chemicals in the lake obsolete. So far, 14 trucks of these chemicals, which are expensive and need to be dosed frequently to provide a continuous solution, could be saved. In Poland it was noticed that the level of cyanobacterial (blue-green algae) cells in a surrounding lake was nine times higher compared to the lake in which the MPC-Buoys were installed.
Due to climate change average temperatures are increasing, as well as the frequency and intensity of droughts. As a result, algal blooms within freshwater lakes occur more often and are more severe. These types of algae represent a group of bacteria, known as cyanobacteria that give rise to a distinctly foul odor and are also known to produce toxins. This year's National Winner of the Energy Globe Award in the Netherlands developed an effective way to monitor water quality, keep track of algae levels when necessary with using ultrasound technology on an automated buoy to kill algae and prevent blooms. Congratulations to your initiative!