Photo by Ocean Belcher | anoceanaway.net

19-year-old Georgia Lala has made sustainability the name of her game.

The teen plans to challenge the way individuals and companies look at adopting sustainable approaches to both production and living.

This path led her to research aquaponics resulting in starting her business Root Aquaponics designing her own units, and winning the Prime Minister’s Future Scientist Award. Georgia’s design created a growing environment for leafy greens on top of an ordinary fish tank – making it easy for anyone to try aquaponics at home.

Georgia shared her idea with the TEDxAuckland 2016 flipside audience – a “highlight in my life so far” – and is relishing the response she received.

“Students have approached me both online and in person about how to go about pursuing scientific passions. It’s been awesome hearing about other people’s passions in the science area and helping them get started, because that was always the hardest part for me.

“The biggest thing it gave me was a confidence boost. Seeing how receptive everyone was to my ideas and visions was truly amazing. “I honestly can’t express in words just what a transformative process it was for me.”

All of this progress has seen her take up residence at Duke University in North Carolina where she is studying natural science thanks to being awarded the prestigious $400,000 Robertson Scholarship.

So for now, her aquaponics projects are on hold but she has bigger ideas in mind.

“Duke has an amazing Environmental Science School that I would love to get involved with and hopefully contribute my ideas to about sustainability!”
By Ciara Pratt @ciaracpratt