Young talent recognised in global photography competition

Young talent recognised in global photography competition

9 November 2009 Press Release

Airbus helps raise awareness of biodiversity amongst young people

Airbus rewards young talent with the announcement of the winners of its international biodiversity photography competition, 'See the Bigger Picture'. 8 youngsters were chosen from entries from 99 countries and took inspiration from surrounding nature for their unique shots.

The international competition, launched in July through a partnership between Airbus, National Geographic and the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), part of the United Nations Environment Programme, encouraged young people to engage in nature and consider the global loss of biodiversity. The competition was developed as part of Airbus' support for The Green Wave, a youth engagement progamme of the CBD to encourage young people to learn about the complexity of life on earth and its role in their future.

The winning images were selected from entries from budding photographers from countries as widespread as Canada to China and Kenya to Estonia, and though divided by geography, all entrants showed a common love of photography, a passion for their natural environment and concern for their futures. Children of Airbus employees were also encouraged to enter and 3 prize winners were selected alongside the 5 global winners. A further 20 young people were also awarded honourable mentions for their impressive entries.

The 8 talented winners will be given a once-in-a-lifetime trip to the Washington headquarters of National Geographic in December. These winners include: Anthony Avellano, 12, from California, USA; Chad Nelson, 12, from the Dominican Republic; Alex Marttunen, 11, from Finland; Clémence Bonnefous, 8, from France; Vinzent Raintung, 8, from Germany; Julia Kresse, 15, from Germany; Patryk Majchrzak, 16, from Poland; Prerona Kundu, 11, from Kansas, USA.

Commenting on the competition, Tom Enders, CEO and President, Airbus, said: "The standard of entries from every corner of the world has been extremely impressive and a great reminder of the variety of living species we have around us. At Airbus, we are working with the CBD and using our global outreach to raise awareness of the need to preserve the variety of life on earth. Acknowledging our responsibility for the world of tomorrow, we are relentlessly pursuing eco-efficiency through innovative technologies, processes, and products."

Executive Secretary of the CBD, Ahmed Djoghlaf, said: "We are delighted Airbus and National Geographic are working with us to inspire the next generation about the importance of protecting the rich biodiversity of the world we live in. This competition is helping to deliver that commitment, engaging and educating today's children in the task of safeguarding the planet."

The world is losing biodiversity at an ever-increasing rate as a result of human activity. "This is a global problem that needs to be addressed today if we want to retain the diversity of the natural world for the generations of tomorrow. It is about the food that we eat and the air that we breathe," said 'See the Bigger Picture' ambassador and world-renowned National Geographic photographer, Joel Sartore.

Sartore was a member of a global panel of judges, who were impressed by the range of subjects that engaged the entrants. Photographs featuring insects, animals, plants and landscapes, were submitted by photographers as young as 6 years old.

To view the winning entries and learn more about how to get involved in The Green Wave visit www.seethebiggerpicture.org.

Notes to editors

All 'See the Bigger Picture' honourable mentions:

  • Vince Ellison B. Leyeza, 11, from Laguna, Philippines
  • Eleanor Bennett, 13, from Stockport, UK
  • Tobias Abrahamsen, 16, from Sarpsborg, Norway
  • Sachin Vijayan, 13, from Thodupuzha, India
  • Chaitra Godbole, 14, from Pune, India
  • Arjun Shankar, 16, from Chennai, India
  • Sara Cuenca Uñac, 13, from Alicante, Spain
  • Mariló Moreno Ruz, 15, from Cádiz, Spain
  • Diego Adrados, 13, from Tarifa, Spain
  • Afton Carpenter, 14, from Gilbert, Arizona, USA
  • Alex Sorensen, 14, from Lincoln, Nebraska, USA
  • Julian Kiesel, 12, from Nyack, New York, USA
  • Samantha Shapiro, 14, from Chappaqua, New York, USA
  • Joshua Hartmann, 12, from S.Surrey, British Columbia, Canada
  • Marvin Pulter, 14, from Germany
  • Jonas Harms, 16, from Germany
  • Malik Babi, 6, from Beauzelle, France
  • Lénaïg Allain-Le Drogo, 12, from Saint Luce Sur Loire, France
  • Zoe Hamelin, 16, from Paris, France
  • Richard Guerre, 9, from Blagnac, France

Competition statistics:

  • 2,350 entries from 99 countries around the world - 5 main prize winners and 15 honourable mentions
  • 247 entries from the children of Airbus employees in 6 countries - 3 main prize winners and 5 honourable mentions
  • Over half of the photographs taken were of land dwelling animals and the greatest proportion of these were insects
  • Some children experimented with underwater shots requiring a high level of skill
  • Just over 40% of entrants took photographs at home, showing awareness that biodiversity can be found in our own back yard
  • See separate document for details of each winning entry and why it was chosen

The Green Wave:

  • The Green Wave is a global biodiversity campaign to educate children and youth about biodiversity
  • The CBD is a United Nations treaty promoting the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity
  • 2010 is the United Nations' International Year of Biodiversity. On May 22 2010 (The International Day of Biodiversity), as part of The Green Wave initiative, young people are invited to plant a tree at 10:00 to celebrate biodiversity. This will create a wave of tree planting as the activity passes through each time zone across the world
  • Photos and stories from the moment can then be uploaded to The Green Wave website to create a virtual wave on the internet
  • Visit greenwave.cbd.int

Airbus specific notes:

  • Airbus believes that growth in air travel is a global need and that the essential social and economic benefits derived from a more connected world, can still be unlocked and deliver a greener world, if everybody plays their part
  • Airbus acknowledges the 2% that aviation contributes to global man-made CO2 emissions, but believes that it also has a responsibility to support others in tackling the remaining 98% of CO2 emissions. Deforestation alone, for example, generates nearly 20% of man-made CO2, so Airbus is working with the CBD, and using its global outreach to raise awareness of the importance of the need to preserve the variety of life on earth
  • This is why it has committed to support the CBD's The Green Wave initiative