A socket which can use solar fridges to power healthcare centres in disaster zones is in the running for the St Andrews Prize for the Environment.
The Solar Socket uses excess power for lamps, fans, laptops and phones which can double as equipment including hand-held blood pressure monitors and vaccination barcode scanners.
Dulas Ltd came up with the device as an addition to their solar vaccine and blood refrigerators already in use in war zones, unindustrialised regions and areas affected by natural disaster.
Also shortlisted for the $100,000 prize is Plantwise, a global programme educating smallholder farmers across the world about reducing crop loss to pests and disease.
An aquaponics project in the Philippines which integrates vegetable and fish production to provide food, nutrition and livelihood for the poor is the other finalist.
The prestigious prize is awarded annually by the University of St Andrews and exploration and production company ConocoPhillips to innovative solutions to environmental challenges which are practical and combine good science, economic reality and political acceptability.
The three finalists were selected from a record 800 entries from 99 countries.
Lord Alec Broers, chairman of the prize trustees, said: “The range of challenges faced across the world remains diverse and complex.
“This is never more apparent than when reviewing the entries for the prize seeing the incredible work that is taking place to confront these challenges.
“In recent years, we have seen a rise in sustainability projects coming forward and, we hope, by supporting such projects that we can help tackle these challenges together.”
Finalists’ presentations will be heard a seminar at the University of St Andrews and the winner will be announced on April 28.
Runners-up will be awarded $25,000.