Arab Youth Center, firm fete young eco leaders at COP28 - GulfToday

Arab Youth Center, firm fete young eco leaders at COP28


Hariharan Ramesh and Farkh Leka Hashimy from the Rochester Institute of Technology-Dubai receive the prize. WAM

Gulf Today, Staff Reporter

Schneider Electric, a leader in the digital transformation of energy management and automation, has announced Rochester Institute of Technology-Dubai (RIT-Dubai) as the winners of the UAE Youth Green Challenge – a collaborative initiative with the Arab Youth Center (AYC).

The winning project was led by Hariharan Ramesh and Farkh Leka Hashimy from Rochester Institute of Technology-Dubai (RIT-Dubai).

The initiative, which was designed to inspire UAE university students to share their innovative solutions for decarbonising the industrial sector, is part of an ongoing programme between Schneider Electric and the Arab Youth Center. In May 2022, both entities collaborated across areas including upskilling, training, and mentorship. The collaboration aims to drive positive action and influence the youth to deliver on sustainability through innovative solutions.

The winning project, an interactive organic waste management app entitled ‘Eco Sync’ was among the six shortlisted submissions and assessed by a panel of expert judges. The project was awarded for delivering excellence across six key pillars: Innovation and Creativity, Environmental Impact, Feasibility and Scalability, Potential for Implementation, Communication and Presentation, and Interdisciplinary Collaboration. The app is designed based on a circularity model, aimed at transforming waste to usable organic compost for retailers, academia, healthcare, and eco-conscious residents.

Sadeq Jarrar, Executive Director, Arab Youth Center, commented: "Our partnership with Schneider Electric in this youth challenge contributes to strengthening our joint work to enhance the contributions of Arab youth to reduce carbon emissions associated with the industrial sector in the region. We are confident that our cooperation will add to this challenge with meaningful initiatives in the future.” "It makes young people ambassadors for the values of sustainability, and we confirm the continuation of our efforts as promising leaders in the field of sustainability locally and globally.”

Asli Cakir, Gulf Vice President of Human Resources, Schneider Electric, said: "The success of the UAE Youth Green Challenge highlights the potential of the youth in driving sustainability and climate action. This collaboration with Arab Youth Center will help translate their commitment into actionable results. We were impressed with the quality, interoperability and design of the innovative AI-integrated app built by the winners; the solution reinforces the importance of effective waste management strategies in reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by more than 4%.”

Cakir added: "We are excited to welcome the winners of this challenge to be part of our Schneider Electric internship programme at our Dubai office, where they will have the opportunity to be an integral part of our region’s sustainability story.”

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