[ NATURE & ENVIRONMENT ] A single photograph that increases the understanding and appreciation of nature and our environment. Photographers are encouraged to explore the relationship between human and nature/environment. Studio scenes that are arranged by the photographer are not eligible. Each participant is allowed to enter up to 10 images. The images must be taken in 2019 or 2020.

Judges for Nature & Environment
Anshika Varma
Jiro Ose
Suejin Shin
Khalil Hamra
Rena Effendi
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First Place

Sebnem Coskun
Anadolu News Agency
Turkey

New danger to underwater life ‘Covid-19 wastes’ According to a report prepared by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), plastic waste equivalent to 33,880 plastic bottles is being mixed into the Mediterranean per minute. one of the countries hit most plastic waste coming to the shores of Italy and then Turkey. The medical wastes used during the pandemic process we live in reach the seas due to the human factor and winds. While plastics and garbage in the world pose a great danger to our seas, “medical wastes”, which are newly included in these garbage, point to bigger problems and an irreversible environmental pollution. Turkish world record-holder free-diver Sahika Ercumen collects rubbish from the sea as she dives in Ortakoy coastline to observe the life and pollution in the Bosphorus in Istanbul, Turkey on June 27, 2020. Ercumen announced as “Life Below Water Advocate” of Turkey by United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), raises awareness on plastic pollution.

Second Place

Ezra Acayan
Getty Images
Philippines

The carcass of a cow floats in the shore as carcasses of horses, dead trees, and houses near Taal Volcano’s crater is seen buried in volcanic ash from the volcano’s eruption on January 14, 2020 in Taal Volcano Island, Batangas province, Philippines. Taal volcano began erupting on 12 January, spewing ash up to 14 kilometers into the air. The volcano generated ashfalls and volcanic thunderstorms, forcing evacuations from the surrounding area. The eruption progressed into a magmatic eruption, characterized by a lava fountain with thunder and lightning. According to the Department of Social Welfare and Development, a total of 212,908 families, nearly 750,000 people, were affected by the eruption. Damage caused to infrastructure and livelihoods, such as farming, fishing and tourism, was put at around US$70 million.

Third Place

Andre Malerba
Independent
USA/Thailand

Researchers from the Thai Red Cross Emerging Infectious Diseases Health Science Center, catch bats as they stream out of Khao Chong Pran Cave to feed, during a catch and release program in Photharam, Ratchaburi Province, Thailand, on Friday, December 11, 2020. The team, led by Doctor Supaporn Wacharapluesadee of Chulalongkorn University, consisting of scientists, ecologists, and officers from Thailand’s National Park Department, have been collecting blood, tissue, saliva and fecal samples from bats in an effort to understand the origins of the Covid-19 virus. Dr. Supaporn and her team have been studying coronaviruses for over a decade, and researchers at Chulalongkorn University were the first in the world to detect a COVID-19 case outside of China, by modifying tests for coronaviruses they had developed over the years.

Award of Excellence

Moniruzzaman Sazal
Independent
Bangladesh

Devastating floods, cyclones and other environmental disasters linked to climate change are threatening the lives and futures of more than 19 million children in Bangladesh