Geographical Young Geographer of the Year: This Year's Question: Seventy per Cent of the World's Surface Is Covered with Water. How Should We Best Use the Seas and the Oceans?

Article excerpt

The Geographical Young Geographer of the Year competition was launched in 1999 to promote the study of geography and to encourage students to carry out independent research alongside their usual studies. The aim is to provide students with an interesting, challenging and topical project. This year, we are asking them to consider ways in which the world's seas and oceans could be used in the future.

Did you know?

* Most of the Earth's surface water is permanently frozen or salty.

* In some places the difference between high and low tide is more than 16 metres.

* Coral reefs are living structures that support a quarter of the ocean's life and some are 25 million years old. They might not be around much longer!

The winning prize

Courtesy of Silva, the winner of our 16-18 years category will win a place on a fantastic Biosphere Expeditions research project monitoring chamois, wolves and bears of the Nizke Tatry mountains in Slovakia from 15 to 27 August 2004. Biosphere Expeditions (www.biosphereexpeditons.org) is an award-winning, non-profit organisation offering hands-on wildlife conservation expeditions as an adventure with a purpose for everyone. Projects aren't tours, photographic safaris or excursions, but genuine wildlife expeditions that give ordinary people with no research experience the chance to work alongside scientists who are at the forefront of conservation. Land Rover supports Biosphere through the provision of off-road vehicles for use in its conservation projects. This underlines Biosphere's "off-road with a purpose" ethos.

Runners-up prizes

Silva, world-famous makers of compasses, navigational aids and optical instruments, are also providing some superb prizes, including binoculars, headlamps, compasses, backpacks, T-shirts and hats. Silva (www.silva.ltd.uk) is proud to support the Young Geographer of the Year awards and Biosphere Expeditions as part of its corporate responsibility programme.

Competition guidelines
(Full guidelines can be found at www.geographical.co.uk)

Categories                       Word limit

Junior Geographer (12 & under)   500 words
Young Geographer (13-15 years)   800 words
Senior Geographer(16-18 years)   1500 words

Competition deadline

30 March 2003

Eligibility: students aged five to 18 from any school in the UK

Format

Entrants must submit a magazine article with the following title: 'Seventy per cent of the world's surface is covered with water, How should we best use the seas and oceans?' They might like to include an interview, map or diagram or conduct a survey. The article must be interesting to read and easily understandable. It may be word processed of handwritten, as long as the latter is legible.

* All work must be the student's own. Any material copied directly from another source must be indicated as such through the use of quotation marks. Copied diagrams and maps must be credited.

* Entries must be marked with the entrant's name, date of birth, teacher's name, school and category.

* Finalists will be contacted directly. Due to the high number of entrants, those who do not reach the shortlist will not be contacted,

* Geographical can't mark of provide feedback on entries.

* The judges' decision is final.

* Visit www.rgs.org for more information.

Last year's winners Everest: yesterday's exploration, today's package holiday, tomorrow's . …