USAID and Burisma Holdings awarded the best journalists on energy reform

24 June 2015

On 24 June 2015, a formal awarding ceremony was conducted for the journalists-winners of the contest for best published materials on energy efficiency, alternative and clean energy, advantages of condominiums, tariff reform and social protection for population.

The contest was conducted by USAID Municipal Energy Reform in Ukraine Project (MERP) together with the Center for Ukrainian Reform Education (CURE), and with sponsorship of the largest oil and gas company of Ukraine Burisma Holdings. The contest was conducted among the journalists of Vinnytsia, Dnipropetrovsk, Zaporizhia, Ivano-Frankivsk, Kyiv, Kherson and Chernihiv oblasts which are partners in implementation of USAID MERP pilot programs.

The contest was conducted in the nominations for the best material in printed and online media, best TV and radio materials. 132 materials from more than 30 journalists from different parts of Ukraine were submitted to the contest – 10 of them were recognized the winners.

The idea of the contest appeared because there were no programs or series of publication in Ukraine devoted to important issues like energy security of Ukraine, tariff and social reforms, natural gas substitution with alternative energy sources. Therefore, objective of the contest was to increase interest of the journalists in coverage of these important issues, increase of high-quality analytical materials based on expert opinions, with regular publication and with public involvement in the discussions and search for solutions in the current situation in the Ukrainian energy and communal services sectors.

Speaking to the audience, Stephen Gonyea, Director of the Office of Economic Growth of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Mission to Ukraine, said: “The mass media has a critical role to play in providing unbiased and objective information on how and why energy sector reforms and increased energy efficiency will help propel Ukraine’s economy forward.”

At the same time, President of Burisma Holdings Mykola Zlochevskyi thought that energy efficient technologies and search for alternative and clean energy sources are among focuses on which attention of Ukraine and our international partners is concentrated. “In order to increase awareness of the Ukrainian citizens of these issues, the USAID Municipal Energy Reform Project has implemented a large-scale education campaign through mass media. This important initiative was supported by the Burisma Holdings team. We are interested in quality development of the Ukrainian journalism and professional coverage of the energy efficiency subject because it is the foundation for the country’s energy security and energy independence”, – he said.

Svetlana Luneva, Julia Sinitskaya, Alexander Lyaskovsky and Andrew Osadchiy won the nomination “The best material in print and on-line media”. municipal television network “MTM” (Zaporizhia municipal information channel), TV channel “Dni-Pro” and student TV studio “Universe-TV” (Zaporizhzhya National University)was awarded for the best TV material. Journalists got Pavel Solodovnyk and Miroslav Berezhnoi became winners in “Best Radio Material”. And Chernigov city portal journalist Viktoria Sidorova got Grand Prix.

Specifically, in continuation of the contest idea, Burisma Holdings decided to establish a special nomination allowing to praise not only contribution of the journalists but also contribution of media in improvement of energy efficiency, alternative and clean energy sources, advantages of condominiums, tariff reform and social protection of population. The winner in this nomination was the Student TV Studio “Universe TV” from Zaporizhia which not only tries to communicate information professionally but also promotes demand for energy efficiency issues among young journalists.

In order to be competitive and efficient, the Ukrainian society should not only accept, but also adopt the best business practices, and at the same time strengthen the educational base. It’s really a challenge for the whole society, which is interesting for us as an innovative company operating in the energy sector. To create the environment for supporting innovation in areas related to the introduction of new, breakthrough technological solutions, especially when it comes to decisions aimed at reducing the energy consumption of industrial, housing and municipal infrastructure is the number one task for any socially responsible business. Therefore, we will continue to support such educational initiatives in future,” – said the Adviser to the Board of Directors at Burisma Holdings Vadym Pozharskyi.