5th edition launched on May, 11th 2021: HeidelbergCement invites researchers, students, local communities, NGOs and nature lovers from around the world to participate in its international scientific and educational competition. The QLA Its aim is to raise the awareness of the ecological value of extraction sites and to find new ways to further enhance it. New in this fifth edition is the introduction of the category “Nature Based Solutions” at international level, also Israel and Bulgaria joining for the first time.

To participate in the contest, students, researchers, NGOs and local communities have to submit a project proposal until 18 November 2021 in one of the two available streams: Research or Community. If they are interested in simultaneously competing at international level, they additionally have to choose one of six categories of the international contest. At national level, the two best projects will be awarded their prizes in the autumn of 2022. The winning team in the research and community stream will each be awarded with prize money with the purchasing power of € 5,000.  At international level, the international jury will assess all competing projects from a broader perspective, with due consideration for transferability. The best projects in each of the six categories will be awarded with a prize of € 10,000 each. The best project overall will receive no less than € 30,000.

!NEW! in this edition: The international category “Nature Based Solutions”, which has the goal of promoting co-benefits for the communities – economic, ecological and social – of sustainable practices that utilise the natural environment, thereby creating additional incentives to involve stakeholders who usually might not have biodiversity protection on their agenda.  

Participating countries in this edition (the National Coordinators can be seen here):

  • Australia
  • Belgium & Netherlands
  • Bulgaria (for the first time!)
  • Czech Republic
  • Egypt
  • France
  • Georgia (back after a break!)
  • Germany
  • Ghana
  • Indonesia (back after a break!)
  • Israel (for the first time!)
  • Italy
  • Morocco
  • North America (Canada & US)
  • Northern Europe (Norway & Sweden)
  • Poland
  • Romania
  • Russia
  • Spain
  • Tanzania
  • Togo
  • Turkey
  • UK

Never has been a more exciting time to be at the forefront of nature conservation. With the super years 2020/2021 bringing various new goals, targets, initiatives, partnerships related to nature, and overarching the UN decade of ecosystem restoration and the post-2020 Global framework. It is clear that the private sector needs to play a key role in reversing biodiversity loss by understanding its impacts and dependencies, mainstreaming the topic throughout the business and working toward a net positive outcome for nature. Join us and register to submit your proposal!

More information: In this brochure or "How to participate".

Please also watch the video statement of our CEO Dr. Dominik von Achten on the HeidelbergCement website.