Träger des Deutschen Umweltpreises 2022 der DBU: Die beiden Ingenieure Friedrich Mewis (oben links) und Dirk Lehmann sowie der Biologe Christof Schenck (unten). / Weiterer Text über ots und / Die Verwendung dieses Bildes ist für redaktionelle Zwecke unter Beachtung ggf. genannter Nutzungsbedingungen honorarfrei. Veröffentlichung bitte mit Bildrechte-Hinweis. Foto: Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt/Pohlmann/DBU; Schröer/ZGF/obs

The development of a more environmentally friendly ship propulsion system and a great personal commitment to species protection were awarded the German Environmental Prize this year. The prize, awarded by the German Federal Environmental Foundation, goes to the Hamburg engineer duo Friedrich Mewis and Dirk Lehmann for the development of energy-saving propulsion technology for large ships.

The biologist Christof Schenck, managing director of the Frankfurt Zoological Society, will be honored for his commitment to large national parks in the tropical rainforests of the Amazon, the Congo Basin and Southeast Asia, the foundation announced on Monday in Osnabrück. The three winners share the prize money of 500,000 euros. The award will be presented on October 30th by Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier in Magdeburg.

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At the 30th presentation of the German Environmental Award this year, an honorary award will also be given to a young farmer and a young environmentalist: Myriam Rapior from the environmental association BUND and Kathrin Muus as the former federal chairwoman of the rural youth have campaigned for this with their work in the “Future Commission for Agriculture”. , to overcome trench warfare between environmental protection and agriculture, said the Secretary General of the Federal Foundation, Alexander Bonde. Both receive 10,000 euros each from the foundation for their work.

With the development of a more efficient propulsion system for large, slow ships, including container ships, since its introduction in 2008, around 12 million tons of environmentally harmful greenhouse gases have been saved worldwide, according to the foundation. Mewis, who is now 79, has been working with Lehmann in Hamburg, who is now 58, since 2001.

Thanks to their development of the so-called Becker Mewis Duct, the consumption of heavy fuel oil has been reduced by up to 10 percent. The so-called wake field of the water is bundled behind the ship and the flow resistance is reduced. Thanks to the technology, the noise pollution for marine animals such as whales is also lower. So far, the technology has been installed in 1,400 ships around the world, and 300 have been ordered.

For decades, the biologist Schenck has successfully campaigned to protect and preserve vast areas of wilderness from human encroachment. The 60-year-old wants to protect the “biodiversity hotspots from being attacked by economic interests in the long term and at the same time ensure sustainable development and financial security for the local population,” said the Federal Environmental Foundation.