‘The story of tissues’ video claims top prize in the EPA’s The Story of Your Stuff 2022 competition

A video exploring the environmental lifecycle and impact of tissues has won the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) The Story of Your Stuff 2022 competition. This year’s competition attracted over 200 entries from schools across the country, as well as the highest number of Irish language entries to date.

The winning entry was created by Wong Cheuk Yin Cayden from St Columba’s College in Dublin, who claims the top prize of €500 for himself, along with €500 for his school. The winning video brings together elements of digital animation, live action, and original scripting and voiceover. It examines the effects of tissue manufacturing on deforestation, water consumption, habitat destruction and human health, and signposts viewers to more environmentally friendly alternatives. The entry ends with a strong reminder that taking small steps when it comes to everyday decisions can have a lasting, positive environmental impact. Now it its sixth year, The Story of Your Stuff competition empowers young people by encouraging them to realise the influence they can have on their friends and family when it comes to making environmentally responsible consumer choices. With its focus on sustainability, waste management, climate action and environmental protection, the competition asks young people to think, talk and make small changes that can have far-reaching impacts. Competition ambassador, citizen candidate-astronaut candidate and award-winning STEM advocate, Dr Norah Patten commented: “From tissues and wet wipes, to beef, circuit boards and much more besides, the topics selected by this year’s competition entrants demonstrate an inspiring amount of creativity and critical thinking skills among our young people. Given the ever-present urgency of the climate crisis, these are qualities to be nurtured. The Story of Your Stuff competition is a reminder of the important collective voice that young people have on climate issues. It is beholden on all of us to not just hear that voice – but to really listen to it.” Dr Jonathan Derham of the EPA and chair of the judging panel, added: “We are once again heartened by the extent and depth of the response among students to this year’s The Story of Your Stuff competition. This reflects the sincere commitment of Ireland’s young people to encouraging behaviour change and driving climate action. Moreover, it highlights how our young people view environmental issues in a way that is creative, proactive and solutions oriented. On behalf of the EPA, I would like to extend my congratulations to the winning students, and to all those who entered.” ‘The Story of Pens’ by Holly Walshe from Loreto College Foxrock, Co. Dublin won second prize and ‘The Story of Circuit Boards’ by Liam O Sullivan, Thomas Shaughnessy, Michael Duggan & Lochlann Mechan from Portumna Community School, Co. Galway came third. The prize winners for the climate topic and Irish-language awards were:

  • Climate topic prize: Hari Pranavam, Kimi Alcantara, Conall O’Brien and Raeem Siddiqui from Saint Eunans College, Co. Donegal for their entry, ‘The Story of Beef’
  • Irish-language prize: Ellie Ni Chonaill and Anna Ní Mhurchú from Gaelcholaiste Charraig Ui Leighin, Co Chorcaí for her entry, ‘Scéal Certíní’ which looks at wet wipes.

Concluding, Director of the UCD Earth Institute, Professor Tasman Crowe said: “It was a privilege to virtually connect with the shortlisted entrants of this year’s The Story of Your Stuff competition. Their ingenuity and insight, as evidenced through their entries, bodes well for a future that demands creative thinkers to help solve pressing environmental issues. I hope the entrants will continue to question and challenge these issues, much as students from the UCD BSc in Sustainability whose videos were shown during the final event do, and I hope to see some of them in UCD in the future” All winning entries can be viewed here.

  • EPA spokespersons are available for interview on request.
  • Photographs of the overall winner are available on request.

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