Armed with a suitcase full of cash, businessman Dick Smith will announce details of his Wilberforce Award – with $1 million cash to be given away.
The award is designed to give away the million dollar prize to anyone under 30 who can impress Smith by becoming famous through his or her ability to show leadership in communicating an alternative to our population and consumption growth-obsessed economy. He says he will be looking for candidates whose actions over the next year show that they have what it takes to be among the next generation of leaders our incredible planet so badly needs.
However, candidates will not apply for the Wilberforce Award. Over the next 12 months, Smith will be following the media throughout the world to see who is the most outstanding individual in not only making a significant contribution to this important issue, but who also becomes famous through his or her contribution to the debate.
One year from now he will announce the winner of the $1 million Wilberforce Award. The Award will go towards advancing the momentum the winner will have already achieved.
“It has become obvious to me that my generation has overexploited our wonderful world and its younger people who will pay the price,” said Smith.
“Like many people my age, I’ve benefited from a long period of constant economic and population growth – we are addicted to it. But sooner or later this consumption growth will have an end. We appear to be already bumping against the limits of what our planet can sustain and the evidence is everywhere we see.
“Right now I believe we could be sleepwalking to catastrophe because we are failing to both acknowledge that there are limits to growth in a finite world and to prepare for a more sustainable way of organising our economy.
“This is the most important issue I have ever undertaken in my life, I won’t rest until we have a proper plan in place that informs Australians just how many people we can sustainably support in this country” he concludes.
The launch will be at 11am on Wednesday 11 August at the FEX Market Site, located at the old Burns Philip Building (opposite the ASX), 5 Bridge Street, Sydney.