The school was the first in the oil-rich United Arab Emirates to scoop the prestigious $100,000 Zayed Future Energy Prize in the Global High School category and they have already put the money to good use. The Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Bangladesh Islamia School installed an 11.52 KW rooftop solar array.
Green Prophet attended the 2013 Zayed Future Energy Prize giving ceremony in Abu Dhabi earlier this year and witnessed its incredible generosity.
But it was only in 2012 that the Global High School category was introduced when the UN Secretary General launched the “Sustainable Energy for All Initiative.”
Inspired by the UAE’s founding father Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the awards aim to focus on education of future generations, according to Director General (and Masdar head) HE Dr Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber.
“We believe that education can power renewable energy. We commend Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Bangladesh Islamia School for the successful completion of the first phase of their award-winning project,” he said at the inauguration ceremony.
“The installation of the solar systems not only marks an important milestone for the school, but it will also serve as an inspiration to like-minded institutions in the UAE and abroad.”
Eventually the school hopes to become carbon neutral, which is partially what judges appreciated about their competition submission. But for now, baby steps lead to massive gains.
Before installing the PV system, which will provide energy for lighting and cooling or roughly 30 percent of the overall demand, the school installed energy-saving bulbs that has already decreased energy consumption by an impressive 15 percent.
For this they won an award from the UAE-based Sustainable Schools Initiative.
“As a school with roots in the UAE, the home of our beloved founding father, our selection as winner for the Prize is an exceptional honor, said Mir Anisul Hasan, Principal of the Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Bangladesh Islamia School.
“The Global High Schools category reaches out to schools and students with the simple but powerful message that every student holds the capacity to make a difference. The Prize’s underlying philosophy will serve as a source of inspiration to students worldwide.”
If you’re planning to enter the 2014 competition, note that it closes to submissions on 5 August, 2013.