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2 Indian enterprises win Green Oscars

The enterprises have won two of the five Ashden Awards for sustainable energy and a cah prize of #30,000 each.

india Updated: Jun 16, 2006 11:44 IST

Indian enterprises have won two of the five Ashden Awards for sustainable energy for 2006, popularly known as the 'Green Oscars', and a cash prize of £30,000 each.

The organisations which have won the award include Appropriate Technology Institute (AARTI), Pune, for the design of a revolutionary biogas system that generates gas for cooking from food waste and other sugary and starchy material.

The other is International Development Enterprises of India (IDEI) which has been behind the manufacture and distribution of 510,000 treadle pumps - a simple device that uses human power to pump water from wells, streams and lakes up onto the fields allowing farmers to grow crops all year round.

Besides, Vivekananda Kendra and Nardep, bagged the second prize of 10,000 pounds for making a series of advances to biogas designs which generate gas for cooking and developed effective ways of using slurry as a powerful fertilizer using a combination of new and traditional techniques.

Lord May of Oxford, a former Chief Scientific Adviser to the UK Government and former Head of the UK Office of Science and Technology presented the awards to Anand Karve of AARTI and Amitabha Sadangi, Executive Director of IDEI at a largely attended function at the Royal Geographical Society in London on Thursday night.

Prominent among those present on the occasion was David Cameron, MP, Chief of the Conservative Party.

Receiving the award, Karve described it as a great honour conferred on his organisation. He said the potential user of the new biogas technology in Maharashtra are estimated to be 1.5 million households. So far, the Institute has covered about 8,000 of them.

"The award money will be used for expanding our awareness generation campaign and the training programme for artisans," he said, adding that over the next two years "we hope to reach more than 25,000 urban households."

Sadangi said the Ashden Awards "are a reflection of the world we would like it to be. It is easy to feel despair every time we read about tragedies in the poorest parts of the world. But when I look at the finalists of Ashden Awards and their work, I see hope.

"IDE, India, will use this award money to introduce Treadle Pump in Chattisgarh, one of the backward states in India. Treadle Pumps will help people to increase productivity and reduce poverty."