Calling on young people to solve environmental issues in their local community

Ciara Zomer and Elaine Nevin, National Director (CEO) of ECO-UNESCO. (Pic: Marc O'Sullivan)

Do you have an idea about how to reduce energy consumption in your school? Are you concerned about the levels of pollution of the river in your local area? How could you tackle the issue of plastic waste in your classroom? 

Well, registration for ECO-UNESCO’s Young Environmentalist Awards are now open. The competition welcomes entries from young people aged 10-18-years across Ireland, in primary and secondary schools, youth groups, community groups and Youthreach centres.  The awards recognise young people who are raising awareness and implementing solutions to environmental issues in their community in the form of a new or already established project. Now in its 25th year, over 60,000 young people have participated in the initiative since it began.


ECO-UNESCO is Ireland’s leading environmental education youth organisation working to conserve the environment and empower young people. Working with over 15,000 young people last year, ECO-UNESCO provides a wide range of programmes and services, including: expert environmental workshops, environmental youth programmes, training programmes, education resources and environmental youth work aimed at young people, leaders and teachers, as well as consultancy services.

As part of the competition process, participants will be invited to submit ‘action projects’ across 13 categories, including: climate change, biodiversity, water, energy, transport, marine-life, and waste. Each project entered is required to show that young people have taken action that protects the environment in some way, while also raising awareness in the community.

Registrations for the Young Environmentalist Awards 2024 are open until Wednesday, 20th December. Groups are required to submit their information to express their interest in being involved. Details of the ‘action project’ are not required at this stage of the competition. Further information is available here: