Entry is free, and up to six winners will receive £20,000 each in prize money for programme development, with one overall Energy Champion awarded £40,000. The Awards will be presented at a VIP ceremony in London in July 2010.
"We are interested in initiatives that have radically improved the lives of individuals and local communities and can demonstrate significant environmental benefits through the use of renewable energy and/or energy saving measures", explains Maya Vaughan from the Ashden Awards. "We reward existing achievements. Award-winning schemes must have been consistently successful for at least one year with plans for further expansion. Schemes must also be highly replicable to ensure maximum impact in the battle against climate change".
Past winners have used a variety of technologies that both benefit local communities and achieve carbon savings, such as fuel - efficient stoves, micro-hydro plants, biogas plants, solar energy systems and water pumps. Through this many are boosting local peoples’ income, providing employment or training, and improving women’s status in their community.
Details of the 2009 International winners, including short films about their work, are online.
In addition to nominations for the international award, the Ashden Awards for Sustainable Energy is also seeking entries from inspirational sustainable energy schemes in the UK that use renewable energy, or reduce energy demand at a local level.