Costa Smeralda Consortium launches first literary prize
2018-01-25By Sanchita Sivaraman

Known for its enchanting beaches and impressive landscapes, the eco-conscious Sardinian region of Costa Smeralda is launching its first literary prize dedicated to stories of the sea and of ocean conservation.

The Costa Smeralda Consortium is a non-profit association of residents and property owners in Costa Smeralda. Its primary goal involves protecting the territory and the common interests of its members. Sponsored by the Ministry of Environment, the Costa Smeralda Prize has been divided into three categories; fiction, non-fiction and blue innovation. The latter will be presented to an innovator, researcher, entrepreneur or administrator who has established clear steps towards preserving marine life. In addition to this, the public will get a chance to select one of the winners from each of the categories for a special prize during an award ceremony, set to take place on April 28.

A beach on the Costa Smeralda, Sardinia. photo: Shutterstock

The ceremony will follow a weekend of activities (April 21-22) surrounding environmental sustainability. For example, associations, residents, students, consortium members and the Municipality will clear plastic from the coastal beaches. Thanks to a collaboration with local artists and the MedSea Foundation, this plastic will then be transformed into artwork and will on display at the award ceremony.

The competition will be judged by an international panel of distinguished writers and researchers from cultural and scientific fields, including Donatella Bianchi, leader of Linea Blu and President of WWF. Monetary prizes and a piece of artwork are up for grabs, and will be presented in front of several renowned individuals from the ocean conservation world.

The Costa Smeralda Prize hopes to promote a more widespread conversation about current threats to the marine environment. It highlights the importance of the oceans as an element of climate regulation and supplier of renewable energies. "The sea to be told and protected: it is in this dimension that essays, novels and research capable of concretely promoting greater respect for the sea resource will be selected and rewarded,” says artistic director of the prize, Beatrice Luzzi. In this regard, the prize seeks to showcase stories and projects linked to the sea in a way that's truly authentic.