The winners of the inaugural the Commonwealth Litter Programme (CLIP) STOMP Awards were announced at the CLIP Innovation Conference: “STEM the tide of plastic waste in Africa" in Cape Town on 5 December 2019.

From the 63 entries, five winners were selected in five categories: Technology or Technical Design, Product, Adult Inspire through Creativity and Youth Inspire through Creativity, and Special Recognition for Action.

The winning entries were as follows:

The Technology or Technical Design Award went to The Mermaid Tear Catcher, submitted by Clare Swithenbank-Bowman from the KwaZulu-Natal, North Coast A recycled plastic “frisbee” that essentially is used to sieve out nurdles and other small plastics from the sand and facilitates people getting involved in citizen science projects.

The judges said that the entry was a “fun, creative community solution to removing plastic waste that could be easily replicated anywhere in the world.”

Finalists in this category were Wildtrust – Pyrolysis Machine from Hilton in KwaZulu-Natal and Games Tangibl, submitted by Jean Greyling from Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape.

The Product Award went to Patch Bamboo Plasters submitted by Dr Milliea Anis. Judges said that it was “a unique, practical and tested product that has been courageously trialed in South Africa, and importantly replaces plastic products that most overlook without thinking twice.”

Finalist in this category also included The Big Scoop SA submitted by Alexis Wellman from Cape Town, Beeswax Wrap submitted by Mica Da Silva from Ballito, KwaZulu-Natal and The Mutea EcoPod submitted by Liam Bulgen from Cape Town , Western Cape.

Luke Rudman’s The 12 Plastic Monsters, a performance art work that uses plastic waste to convey the horror of plastic pollution, won the Adult Inspire through Creativity Category. Judges said that they loved the entry as it was brilliantly creative and driven by a passion for the oceans, citing it as inspiring and unique.

Finalists in this category were The Well Worn Theatre Company submitted by Kyla Davis from Johannesburg and The SuperScientists Project by Codemakers NPO, submitted by Justin Yarrow from Berea in Durban, KwaZulu Natal.

The Youth Inspire through Creativity was won by The Oceano Reddentes NPC submitted by twelve-year-old Jade Bothma from the Western Cape, who started the non-profit that is “Saving the sea one piece of plastic at a time” through education, awareness, and research.”

Finalists in this category were The Future Kids submitted by Rocco Da Silva from the Western Cape and Norman Klutsky Eco-Warrior of the High Seas - Eden College submitted by Jean Van Elden, Berea, Durban KwaZulu-Natal

The Special Recognition Award for Action went to Singakwenza, submitted by Julie Hay from KwaZulu-Natal. Singakwenza, which means ‘we can do it’ in isiZulu, provides low cost, high impact health and early education through empowerment programmes to economically-disadvantaged communities, particularly in rural areas of KwaZulu-Natal.  Much of what they do involves recycling of plastic waste. This entry impressed the judges in terms of showing tangible impacts on both waste and social upliftment.

Finalists in this category were Captain Fanplastic, submitted by Nwabisa Joba from the Western Cape and The Ethekwini Conservancies Forum, submitted by Paolo Candoti from Durban, KwaZulu-Natal

‘Most of these finalists and some other entrants that very much impressed the judges, attended our CLIP Conference, and were able to present their projects to delegates working and researching in the marine pollution sector,” said Kyle Briggs, Contest Lead from the UK's Centre for Environment Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas) which leads the CLIP Programme. “It was a really exciting two days of knowledge-sharing and looking at practical solutions to the marine pollution problem which we hope will help contestants develop their ideas further. These creative ideas from the STOMP Awards form part of CLIP’s efforts in finding creative solutions to plastic waste. It sends a clear message that plastic pollution is not only confined to scientists or policy-makers, and that anyone can innovate. Together people from all walks of life can find tangible solutions that have real impact. Congratulations to all the winners, finalists and everyone who entered with a  commitment to find solutions to the plastic pollution challenge!.”

For more information about the awards go to www.stompawards.co.za.