New York student to represent U.S. in international Stockholm Junior Water Prize competition

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ALEXANDRIA, VA, June 19, 2012 – Kunal Sangani of Fayetteville, N.Y. was named the U.S. winner of the 2012 Stockholm Junior Water Prize (SJWP)—the most prestigious international competition for water-related research—during a ceremony this past weekend in Boston, Mass.

Sangani’s project, “Modeling and Environmental Analysis of Hydraulic Fracturing in Upstate New York” was top among 49 state SJWP winners at the national competition held in Boston June 14-16. His study examined various aspects of hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking, on groundwater resources in upstate New York and presented a model for understanding its potential environmental impacts on the natural environment and groundwater resources.

“Kunal’s paper and the SJWP competition in general continues to reinforce my belief that the future of America’s water is in good hands,” said Mohamed F. Dahab, chair of the SJWP Review Committee. “The level of research and creativity presented by the young men and women who participated was simply outstanding.”

Sangani received $3,000 (USD) and an all-expense paid trip to Stockholm, Sweden, where he will compete against national winners from more than 30 countries for the international honor during World Water Week, August 25-30, 2012. HRH Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden will present the international award—$5,000 and crystal sculpture—during a royal ceremony held in conjunction with the Stockholm Water Symposium.

Sangani’s school, Fayetteville-Manlius High School, will receive a $1,000 grant toward enhancing water science education and he will have the opportunity to present his research to thousands of water quality professionals at WEFTEC® 2012—the Water Environment Federation's 85th annual technical exhibition and conference—September 29 – October 3 in New Orleans, La.

Three U.S. finalists, Natalie Ng, Cupertino, Calif.; Taide Ding, Oxford, Miss., and Ajay Krishnan of Portland, Ore. also received a $1,000 award.

In addition to the SJWP winners, Sydney-Alyce Bourget of Jonesboro, Ga. received the Bjorn von Euler Innovation in Water Scholarship for her project, “The Chronic Toxicity of Acetaminophen on Daphnia magna.” The award recognizes projects that demonstrate a unique passion for education and awareness of sustainable water management, and the prestigious $1,000 scholarship honors the valuable work and contributions of former WEF Board member and retired ITT Corporation communications director, Bjorn von Euler.

The Water Environment Federation sponsors the U.S. SJWP with support from Xylem Inc. and the Coca-Cola Company. The New England Water Environment Association hosted the 2012 national competition and Sangani received sponsorship from the New York Water Environment Association.

For more information about the SJWP and to download the winning paper, please visit www.wef.org.

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