Twenty students from SES recently completed in the Earth Prize Competition. Divided into four teams, they all proposed ways of dealing with plastic waste. The team Sensible Saiyans (Kharisa, Grace, Thanin and Viggo) were ranked in the top 30 in the world!
Brief summary of our solution
Our team aims to solve the national issue of excessive plastic waste and its subsequent poor management. Therefore, our proposed solution is to introduce a new government policy: tax reductions of 10% for businesses that produce products containing a minimum of 20% recycled plastic. This will give businesses a financial incentive to buy and use more recycled plastic, which will lead to an increased demand for it, resulting in the growth of the plastic recycling industry. Subsequently, there will be an overall decrease in plastic waste.
Personal Statements (What we learned, the experience, what we liked, what we did)
I really enjoyed the process of developing a solution for one of the biggest and most severe global problems – plastic waste. From the experience, I learned many valuable skills such as communication, research, writing, problem-solving, and teamwork skills. When we finally crafted a solution, I knew our policy idea would be a hit or miss. Either the judges would love it or think it is absolutely ridiculous. I’m so glad that we entered the Earth Prize 2022 Scholars division. In other words, the judges loved it. But my favourite part of the entire experience was the opportunity to solve a global crisis and closely work with my team in solving it.
We had the opportunity to develop a solution for a prevailing global issue. Our team proposed a policy to reduce plastic waste through tax incentives aimed at businesses. Over the course of 2 months, I learned about the effects plastic waste had on the environment and the subsequent health risks it causes. I developed collaborating, problem-solving, research, and critical thinking skills. It was a great experience overall.
As a older student what I enjoyed the most was seeing younger students full of energy and dedication to a project. They had lots of interesting ideas and a fresh perspective that reminded me that we can all learn from each other. The issue is a major one that affects our country and as a proud Indonesian I am glad that these problems are being looked at and hopefully the consequences can be alleviated. This was a great experience and I recommend that all our students should participate in this project in the future.
Through the Earth Prize, I have expanded my knowledge on alarming global issues, such as the overwhelming problem of plastic waste, which we chose to tackle, along with developing my teamwork and communication skills. The prize allows our team to collaborate to form our policy solution and shape it to make sure our ideas get across clearly. It was a new and exciting experience, as it encouraged us to think outside the box in order to stand out from the crowd. I was really glad for our team to become one of the shortlisted teams to be picked for the finalists.
Obviously I am pleased with the team “Sensible Saiyans” who were ranked in the top 30 from over 700 schools with over 2500 teams. We were competing against some of the most prestigious schools in the world such as Eton and King’s College.. We should also congratulate the other teams and students who also put together excellent proposals to deal with the issue of plastic pollution. I am sure they all benefited from the experience and will now use these skills in subjects such as Science, Global Perspectives and Business Studies.