Yolandi’s aWetbox (‘wetland in a box’) won top honours at the South African Global Cleantech Innovation Programme in October 2016 which led to her taking part in the global competition final at the Cleantech Week in San Francisco in February 2017. Her project was awarded a runner-up prize in the Global Cleantech Innovation Award.
“Ecological engineering has been part of my life for a long time. Over a decade ago, I starting thinking about creating sustainable ecosystems that would be environmentally sound, make economic sense and be socially acceptable and beneficial,” says Yolandi. “I encourage all green entrepreneurs out there to persevere. Do not give up on any of your green ideas and innovations just because you do not have any funding for getting it market ready, or to start with the manufacturing of your first units. Try to access local funding opportunities. No idea is too small to make a big difference.”
Yolandi is currently in her final year of MPhil Integrated Water Management studies at Monash South Africa which is supported by the Foundation-funded International Water Security Network. Her research examines the effects of floating wetlands on water quality of static water bodies. She is also the CEO of a company called Baoberry which specialises in ecological engineering and services and she presented at the Foundation’s 2016 conference in London.
The Cleantech Week, hosted by the Cleantech Open (CTO), is a confluence of the cleantech industry and climate movement that aims to create new business opportunities by cultivating partnerships within the cleantech innovation space.
For more about Yolandi and the awards see http://www.watersecuritynetwork.org/first-commercial-household-natural-filter-introduced-to-us-at-global-cleantech-innovation-awards/