FGen’s contest draws interesting climate change solutions

Published November 25, 2021, 3:44 PM

by MB Business

Clean energy leader First Gen Corporation has received interesting entries in a rigorous two-month competition among hundreds of students and Lopez Group employees who responded to a First Gen challenge to suggest solutions to climate change and to other issues related to this problem.

First Gen Corporation

The contest, dubbed “Innovate for the Climate 2021” or IFTC 2021, attracted over 300 participants in 14 student teams from different First Gen partner-schools and 13 Lopez Group employee squads.

First Gen dared the participants to submit proposals that address any of the five priorities under the National Climate Change Action Plan: water sufficiency, environment and ecological stability, sustainable energy, waste management, and knowledge and capacity development.

The students are competing under the “Youth Challenge” category, while employees from First Gen and its sister companies under parent firm First Philippine Holdings Corporation (FPH) are vying among themselves under the “FPH Community Challenge” grouping.

Out of the 27 teams that submitted their respective entries, 15 have reached the final round, of which 9are student and 6 are FPH employee teams.

These finalists will present and explain their entries in a program that will be streamed live from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Nov. 26, 2021, over First Gen’s “Create for the Climate” Facebook Page. The program will form part also of activities to mark National Climate Change Consciousness Week from Nov. 19 to 25.

During the program, 10 winning teams – 5 from each category — will be named “Top Climate Innovators.”As winners, each will receive up to P100,000 seed money. Runners-up or winners of the special “Mentors’ Choice Award” and “Climate Ambassadors’ Award” will receive a P25,000 prize money.

On top of the cash prize, members of the Top Climate Innovators’ teams will get mentored by climate science experts; while their winning entries will undergo a project incubation, during which period their projects are tested for real-world applicability.

Launched last Sept. 10, ITFC 2021 required participants from both student and employee categories to bolster their knowledge by completing a series of learning sessions, called “Ideathon Boosters and Climate Learning.” These learning sessions included webinars, workshops and mentoring sessions from various First Gen partner organizations.

First Gen is the country’s leading clean and renewable energy company with 3,495 megawatts of total capacity. These plants run on geothermal, wind, hydro and solar energy, which are all renewable; and on natural gas, the cleanest form of fossil fuel. It organized ITFC 2021 as another avenue to support FPH’s new mission: “Forging collaborative pathways for a decarbonized and regenerative future.”

For ITFC 2021, First Gen gathered a long list of partners. They are Abot Tala Community; ABS-CBN Foundation; Ang Misyon; Climate Change Commission; ClimateScience; Forest Foundation Philippines; Foundation for the Philippine Environment; Isle Utilities; Living Laudato Si’; Lopez Group Foundation Inc.; MAD Travel; Manila Observatory; New Energy Nexus; Oscar M. Lopez Center; Philippine Business for Social Progress – Water Alliance and UP CIFAL; Philippine Reef and Rainforest Conservation Foundation; Sikat Solar Challenge Foundation; Plastic Bank; The Climate Reality Project- Philippines; The Plastic Flamingo; and Waves for Water.

First Gen also received the support of the following schools: Batangas State University; First College; Lyceum of the Philippines University – Batangas; and University of Batangas.