Since 2003, the Russian National Junior Water Prize competition has been a crucial event in national efforts to promote environmental education amongst high school students across the Russian Federation. The contest invites high school students in the regions to submit an independent research project focusing on water management and environmental sciences. This year’s prize has been awarded to Alexander Bagaev, winner of the Russian National Junior Water Contest in the general nomination category for his project entitled: “Restoration of cities’ reservoirs by use of latent state of hydrobionts”. Alexander Bagaev has earned the chance to represent the Russian Federation at the Stockholm Junior Water Prize- an international competition held each year during World Water Week in Stockholm. The international Stockholm Junior Water Prize competition brings together young scientists such as Alexander Bagaev from around the world to propose innovative projects in water and science and to learn from global leaders in the water sector. In addition to being nominated for the Stockholm Junior Water Contest, Alexander Bagaev won the Green Cross International and Russian National Junior Water Prize “Water and Peace” category with another project called “How to provide students of lyceum no.35 in town of Nizhnekamsk with safe drinking water”. The prize of this category will give Alexander the opportunity to attend a two-week training course at the Center for Environmental and Sustainability Education at Florida Gulf Coast University from May to June 2008 with the financial support of Green Cross.
The Russian National Junior Water Prize continues to stimulate innovative research among Russia’s youth in water issues. Through modern and relevant environmental education in Russia’s national education system, Green Cross supports the exploration of new scientific and policy-oriented solutions to solving environmental problems, both locally in Russia and across the world. Specifically, the Russian National Junior Water Prize focuses Russia’s youth into issues such as drinking water, treatment of wastewater, preservation of biodiversity in urban and rural freshwater reservoirs and studies of correlation of water related, climatic and other factors. The organizer of the contest is the Russian non-governmental organisation Environmental Project Consulting Institute led by Director and Coordinator of the contest Dr. Natalia Davydova.
The research projects submitted by students also concentrated on the social, legal and economic aspects of water access in Russia. Students were thus invited to consider state policy and prioritize goals in water management in addition to carry out fundamental or applied research. Eligible projects had to employ standard research methods and techniques and commonly accepted monitoring and presentation methods, including statistical processing of data.
The participation of Green Cross in the event is in support of its efforts to educate youth and stimulate environmental research amongst youth to create future strategies for sustainable development and create an environmentally aware youth base in society.