• Developer of ethical shopping app Evocco, Hugh Weldon, wins Young Champions of the Earth Prize.
  • Each of the seven Young Champions will receive US$15,000 in seed funding as well as mentorship and technical support to amplify their big idea.
  • From over 750 applicants, 7 young entrepreneurs under the age of 30 with big ideas for environmental change were chosen.

September 2018 –Hugh Weldon, Irish mechanical engineer and co-founder of Evocco is receiving the UN’s highest environmental honor. The 25 year-old from Dublin will be recognized for his smartphone app which calculates a user’s ecologic footprint based on scanned shopping receipts.

Launched in 2017, Young Champions of the Earth is a global initiative aiming to identify, celebrate and support talented individuals between the ages of 18 and 30 with outstanding potential to create positive environmental impact.

Hugh and the team at Evocco educate consumers on the environmental impact of their food purchases. With support from the Young Champions of the Earth team, powered by Covestro, Hugh can scale up his project and reach more users.

“We believe consumers can trigger a mass movement, impacting the whole food chain, and ultimately leading to better agricultural practices at the source,” Hugh said.” We believe that technology is the best weapons in our arsenal to fight climate change.”

The winners will be receiving their award during the high-level Champions of the Earth Ceremony in New York City on 26 September, coinciding with the annual United Nations General Assembly meeting. Each Young Champion will receive US$ 15,000 in seed funding, training and mentoring, and access to a powerful international network of entrepreneurs, private sector mentors and diplomats.

Over the next year, each Young Champion will document their journey and project milestones on social media, through regular updates and video blogs.

“For all the urgent environmental challenges we face, these Young Champions are a powerful reminder that the solutions to these challenges are within our grasp,” Head of UN Environment Erik Solheim said. “Each of these winners has a unique story to tell. Taken together the message our Young Champions send to the world is even stronger: together we can innovate the future we want while preserving the environment we need.”

From over 750 applicants, 35 regional finalists were selected by a global jury, for their creative, innovative and impactful ideas. The seven winning projects address sustainable lifestyles, coral reef restoration, clean water, recycling, energy generation and other urgent environmental issues of our generation.

“Once again, young people across the world have come up with amazing new ideas environmental protection”, says Dr. Markus Steilemann, CEO Covestro. “So also the second year of the Young Champions of the Earth competition has become a huge success. As one of the world’s leading suppliers of high-tech materials for sustainable development, we are partnering with UN Environment in motivating innovators to tackle the enormous challenges our planet is facing.”

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