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    The second edition of the KfW-Bernhard-Grzimek-Preis award ceremony was hosted by Bärbel Schäfer

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    Councillor Rosemarie Heilig welcomed the guests to the evening in Frankfurt, a city with a long-standing commitment to the preservation of biodiversity

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    Achim Steiner, Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme, sent a video message paying tribute to Pavan Sukhdev

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    Dr. Christof Schenk, Director of Frankfurt Zoological Society, presenting the award to Pavan Sukhdev for his ground-breaking work on the TEEB study

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    Pavan Sukhdev together with colleagues from the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research who collaborated on the TEEB study

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    Emmanuel de Merode is Director of Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo, a UNESCO World Heritage Site

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    The laureates' exceptional commitment has initiated a paradigm shift in their fields

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    The laureates together with Dr. Norbert Kloppenburg, Board of KfW Stiftung, Councillor Rosemarie Heilig and Dr. Bernd Siegfried, Managing Director of KfW Stiftung

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The Year 2015 in Review

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The 2015 winners of the environmental award KfW-Bernhard-Grzimek-Preis are Emmanuel de Merode and Pavan Sukhdev

The foundation KfW Stiftung has split the environmental award KfW-Bernhard-Grzimek-Preis 2015 and the prize money of 50,000 euros, awarding one half to Emmanuel de Merode, director of Virunga National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the other half to the scientist and economist Pavan Sukhdev. 

Emmanuel de Merode has been honoured with the award for his outstanding work in Africa’s oldest national park and his commitment to protecting endangered mountain gorillas and the region’s unique biodiversity. In addition, he has launched essential economic initiatives in the national park, aiming to secure a sustainable livelihood for the population. He has contributed immensely to reducing poaching and illegal logging and has been crucial to the conclusion of peace agreements with rebel leaders in the border region.  

Pavan Sukhdev has received the award for his leading contribution to the study “The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity“ (TEEB). It offers a ground-breaking approach to evaluate biodiversity and for the first time ever allows the increasing costs resulting from the loss of biodiversity to be determined. Meanwhile, the approach has been adjusted to be used in different sectors and has been transformed into a useful tool for policy makers. In his tribute, Dr. Christof Schenck, director of Frankfurt Zoological Society, emphasised that both laureates had in their different ways not only proved their long-standing commitment to preserving biodiversity but had made a sustainable contribution to positive structural change. 

Pia Puljanic 
Programme Manager Environment & Climate