The Greenest Blue Hen Challenge for Earth Day 2020

The Greenest Blue Hen challenge 2020 which sought to identify and celebrate UD students doing good for the environment through their personal actions and commitments was concluded on the 50thanniversary of Earth Day, April 22, 2020. This challenge was undertaken over the course of three weeks leading to Earth Day and competitors undertook daily personal sustainability actions centered around three weekly themes as follows; Greener Energy; Greener Waste and Greener Food.

The participants were also required to share their actions online at @UDelSustainable, the official UD Twitter handle for sustainability. The challenge attracted a total of 44 UD participants and out of these 4 were selected as overall winners based on their personal commitments and actions.

The overall winners of the challenge were as follows;

  1. Amanda Williams (UD MSc. Marine Policy) – Greenest Blue Hen 2020
  2. Paula Cardenas Hernandez (UD PhD in Civil & Environmental Engineering) – 1stRunner up
  3. Tingting Zhu (UD PhD in Civil & Environmental Engineering) – 2ndRunner up
  4. Oluwasegun Elijah Akanbi (Msc. Civil & Environmental Engineering) – 3rdRunner up


These overall winners were also preceded by weekly $50 Trivia winners via a quiz type challenge testing participant knowledge on the weekly subject and which was won by the following; Week 1 (Samantha Bingaman – Msc Marine Policy)); Week 2 (Paula Cardenas Hernandez (UD PhD in Civil & Environmental Engineering) and Week 3 Amanda Williams (UD Msc. Marine Policy).

The Greenest Blue Hen challenge also resulted in substantive outcomes for climate change and environmental sustainability such that if the average UD student were to live as sustainably as the Greenest Blue Hen;

  1. Greener Energy outcomes:They would consume 45% less energy, collectively save more than USD$ 120 million as well as reduce CO2 emissions equivalent to plant more than 1 million acres of U.S forests in one year.
  2. Greener waste:They would reduce their plastic waste by a range of 70-90%, equivalent to recycling 20,000 waste trash bags per year and saving enough energy to power 55 American homes.
  • Greener Food: They reduce their “foodprint” (the CO2 associated with food consumption) by more than 60% and the food recycled would be enough fill about 2,000 garbage trucks.

We are grateful to UD Honors and DENIN who provided the financial support to make the Greenest Blue Hen challenge possible. We are also grateful to the UD Sustainability team for their technical support. We are thankful for Prof. John Byrne who provided the key note speech ( at the 2020 Earth Day and award event highlighting the important challenges the climate change catastrophe is posing to our planet and the need for young people to become more deeply engaged in addressing it.

We are also grateful for the five coordinators who moderated the three weeks of the challenge including; Robert Ddamulira (ENEP PhD candidate & DENIN Fellow), the Greener Energy Week 1 leader and founder of the challenge; Chioma Marylyn Atuegbu (UD, MBA) and Digital Strategy lead; the team leaders for Greener Waste, Week 2; Jimmy Murillo Gelvez (PhD Candidate, Civil and Environmental Engineering, DENIN Fellow) and Sashwat Roy (ENEP PhD Candidate) and Danhui Xin (PhD Candidate, Civil and Environmental Engineering & DENIN Fellow) and team leader for Greener Food, Week 3 of the challenge.


You can learn more about the Greenest Blue Hen Challenge here; and Twitter @UDELSustainable