Year 12 Students Win Prestigious Delaware Topical Award for Innovative Seagrass Solution in Climate Change Mitigation

A group of four, Year 12 students led by Kawin 12SJ (Thanadol Wangwijit) participated in the globally acclaimed social-innovation competition, The Diamond Challenge. This prestigious event is organized by one of the leading entrepreneurial institutions in the world, The University of Delaware, located on the east side of The United States. The team was among the select 30 chosen to participate in the final round summit, out of an extensive initial pool of over 600 teams. Among the finalist teams, the team was awarded the distinguished Delaware Solid Waste Authority Waste & Recycling Innovation Topical Award, recognizing their remarkable accomplishments in the field.

In total, there were 3 rounds which consisted of 5-minute presentations to outline all the significant aspects of our product, followed by an extensive 3-minute Q&A session with the panel of judges, each of them leaders in their respective fields.

This project was linked to two significant contemporary issues within Thailand: climate change and the rapid decrease in seagrass populations. To address these challenges, our students proposed a unique solution that could substantially enhance the survivability of seagrass. In turn, this could serve as an effective tool to mitigate carbon emissions, leveraging the seagrass's exceptional carbon absorption capacity. Furthermore, this approach is remarkably cost-effective, ensuring its feasibility for widespread adoption.

The innovative concept was presented to a distinguished panel of judges, each providing unique perspectives on our solution. Despite their diverse backgrounds and points of view, they universally appreciated the originality and simplicity of our product, recognizing its potential to influence meaningful change, initially in Thailand and, foreseeably, throughout Asia.

It all started when considerable amounts of dead seagrass began to surface on the beaches of Trang. Not only that, but the carbon emissions in Thailand had also begun to skyrocket, resulting in extreme negative environmental impacts such as poor air quality, global warming as well as negative health effects. 

As young environmentally concerned citizens, our students thought about how they could utilize the washed-up seagrass and reduce Thailand’s carbon footprint. They wish to use their product to not only help businesses minimize their carbon-emission tax paid, but also help Thailand aim towards the first stage of net zero by 2030, and participating in this event was a major stepping stone in their campaign.

For the final round, our students successfully raised a significant amount of funding, demonstrating both the fiscal viability and the wide-reaching support for our endeavor. This allowed the team to conduct a pilot test in the Trang region, giving the students invaluable firsthand experience and insights. This fieldwork not only facilitated their understanding of the problem at hand but also equipped us with the necessary knowledge to refine our solution for maximum impact.

We're thrilled about what we've accomplished so far and can't wait to see where this journey will lead us next. Thanks to everyone who has supported us in this amazing endeavor and we would love to see you at our future events!

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