Pupils from five schools picked up prizes in PDO’s inaugural Renewable Energy Awards (REAs) for entries including an app alerting users to how much energy their homes are consuming, a solar-powered “smart” bird cage which cleans itself, a park harnessing the energy generating by children on play equipment, and the production of energy from the bacterial breakdown of monoclonal sugars in plants.
Maha Saeed Salem Al Salmi and Fatima Mousa Mohammed Al Rajhi from Hafsa bint Omar for Basic Education School, Ad Dakhliyah won first prize for their project on the treatment and purification of polluted water using the seeds of the Moringa plant.
The REAs were launched in co-operation with the Ministry of Education on Oman Environment Day in January to build a positive environmental and research culture across the Sultanate and enhance student awareness in the field of renewable energy.
More than 150 projects were submitted by schools from across the country, and PDO also launched another contest aimed at Omani businesses in conjunction with the Public Authority for Small and Medium Enterprises (Riyada), under the umbrella of its new Estidama (Sustainability) energy management programme.
The programme is dedicated to building a positive environmental culture across Oman by focusing on six main pillars: renewable energy, people, energy efficiency, and environment, energy saving and economy.
This competition attracted more than 20 entries from SMEs which provided a range of solutions for the oil and gas industry to reduce energy consumption and use renewable resources, such as solar and wind power.
The winner was Abdullah Nasser Al Saidi, from Nafath Renewable Energy, for an automatic system to clean dust and dirt from solar photo voltaic panels. Other winners included a project to recycle wood left from building construction and one to use methane from waste sites to power street lights and offices.
Prizes of up to RO 10,000 were given to the winners at an official ceremony at PDO’s Knowledge World under the auspices of His Excellency Mohammed bin Abdullah Al Mahrouqi, Chairman of the Public Authority for Electricity and Water. There was also an exhibition of their ideas.
PDO External Affairs and Value Creation Director Abdul-Amir Abdul-Hussein Al Ajmi said: “The quality of the winning entries was truly special and demonstrates just how much enthusiasm there is in Oman’s schools and SME community for renewable energy and energy conservation.
“It is clear that those who participated in our two competitions invested much thought and hard work in generating some wonderfully original ideas.
“The Sultanate is blessed with the people, climate and geographical position to become a real centre of excellence for renewable energy and you can be sure that PDO will be doing all it can in this direction as we move to becoming a fully fledged energy company.”
PDO will now provide training to selected winners to develop their scientific knowledge and progress their ideas.
* The REA winners were: Maha Saeed Salem Al Salmi and Fatima Mousa Mohammed Al Rajhi from Hafsa bint Omar for Basic Education School, Ad Dakhliyah ; Ayat bint Khalifa bin Suleiman Al Sinani and Manar bint Hilal bin Yahya Al Azwani from Al Shatha bint Jaber School, Ad Dakhliyah; Shahla bint Khalid bin Ali Al Farei from Samad Primary School, North Sharqiyah; Aseel Khalifa Marhoun Al Rahbi from Shuwaikh School, Muscat; Shahd bint Ahmed bin Nasser Al Alawi, from Sawdah Um Al Mu’mineen School, Adh Dhahirah.
* The Estidama winners were: Abdullah Nasser Al Saidi of Nafath Renewable Energy; Abdul Aziz Al Kalbani of Asrar Al A’Aradh Trading; and Fatma Al Riyami of Xeem – Fatma Al Riyami Consultancy.