Monday, September 17, 2012

Bayer selects 2 young envoys from India

The Bayer Group in India recently announced the winners of the Bayer Young Environmental Envoy 2012 (BYEE 2012) competition from participants across the country.

As a research-based enterprise, Bayer places great emphasis on promoting science education for young people and has therefore been committed to encouraging youth environmental programs for many years. In cooperation with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Bayer organizes and promotes a number of specific projects which aim to improve knowledge about the environment among young people and support them in their environmental commitment. One of these projects is the "Bayer Young Environmental Envoy Program".

Originally initiated in 1998 as a local project in Thailand, the concept was subsequently extended to Argentina, Brazil, Chile, China, Colombia, Ecuador, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Malaysia, Peru, the Philippines, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Venezuela and Vietnam. In 2012 Costa Rica joins the program for the first time.

One of the main objectives is to support and encourage young students who are actively involved in hands-on environmental projects. The environmental champions from India – Gaurav Maheshwari & Swapnil Kokate along with 48 winners from 18 other countries will travel to Germany from November 4-9, 2012 on a week-long all-expenses-paid study tour sponsored by Bayer. On this field trip, the students will get a first-hand experience of how sustainable environmental practices are pursued jointly by the people, government and industry. The excursion entails visits to various waste management and recycling sites as well as workshops on nature monitoring and conservation.

2_envoys_2_2013 The environmental champions from India – Swapnil Kokate (second from left)
and Gaurav Maheshwari (third from left )

The main criterion for judging the Bayer Young Environmental Envoy 2012 Program was active participation of the student in conducting a hands-on environmental project. Short-listed students were then interviewed to gauge their knowledge and communication skills. The two selected candidates from India have an exemplary academic record and have worked in their areas towards environmental protection.

Gaurav Maheshwari is a 21 year old undergraduate Chemical Engineer from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi. The motivation behind his environmental project is to provide decentralised waste-water treatment facilities to rural areas where centralised facilities are economically unviable. Phycoremediation - an algal treatment of water not only improves water quality, but also the end product of biomass can be used as a fertilizer, as well as to derive bio-fuels.

Gaurav loves to travel and understand different cultures. He has already done projects in Environment and Humanities and is about to start a research project in the field of Nano-technology.

His comment on winning the BYEE 2012 award, "I feel highly privileged on being selected as one of the Environmental Envoys and hope that this unique opportunity to meet representatives from all over the world would allow me to learn from their expertise. I would like to thank Bayer for providing the world's youth a platform to connect together and share ideas on critical issues such as environment".

Swapnil Kokate is a 23 year old polymer engineer from the Institute of Chemical Technology, Mumbai. His areas of interest involve sustainable technologies and developing products for rural India. He has conceptualized and developed an 'Electricity Free Egg Incubator'.

For a country like India where 1.6 billion chickens are hatched every year and 75% of hatcheries are present in rural areas, electricity shortage is a serious challenge for hatchery owners. Swapnil's technology will not only help poultry farmers but also rural women to start their own business at low fixed capital and without suffering from any drawbacks of electricity need. Swapnil has already installed one pilot unit and has filed for a patent for this innovative product. After graduation, he will be looking for commercialization of his technology.

His comment on winning the BYEE 2012 award, “I feel really honoured and proud to be a part of the BYEE family and to be able to represent India. I thank Bayer Group of Companies in India for giving me an opportunity to put forth my views in the upcoming global forum. The program has further fostered my motivation to find a solution to the socio-environment problems.

" As an inventor company, Bayer sets trends in research intensive areas and places great emphasis on promoting science education and youth environmental programs. As a step forward this year, in order to make the BYEE program more sustainable and interesting, an additional award has been introduced globally. Prior to the main field trip to Germany, envoys are invited to submit their project details along with suggestions on what would be most helpful to make it even more successful. In the end, three ‘best-practice’ BYEE projects will be selected based on key criteria such as sustainability of the project, inventiveness and project management. These projects will then be offered support from Bayer in the form of materials or technological expertise.

Bayer: Science For A Better Life

Bayer is a global enterprise with core competencies in the fields of health care, agriculture and high-tech materials. As an inventor company, it sets trends in research-intensive areas. Bayer’s products and services are designed to benefit people and improve the quality of life. At the same time, the Group aims to create value through innovation, growth and high earning power. Bayer is committed to the principles of sustainable development and acts as a socially and ethically responsible corporate citizen. In fiscal 2011, the Group employed about 112,000 people and had sales of €36.5 billion. Capital expenditures amounted to €1.7 billion, R&D expenses to €2.9 billion. For more information, please visit www.bayer.com.

Contact :

Uma Hariharan,
Corporate Communications,
Bayer Group in India
Tel.: +91 22 2571 1094
E-mail: uma.hariharan@bayer.com

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