Galway students' food game reaches Sustainable Energy Ireland finals

Merlin College duo create game to calculates an individual's carbon footprint as they shop

Merlin College students, and One Good Idea finalists, Kinga Nuemann and Reuben Street, with their science teacher Claire Cunnigham.

Merlin College students, and One Good Idea finalists, Kinga Nuemann and Reuben Street, with their science teacher Claire Cunnigham.

Two second year students from Coláiste Mhuirlinne/Merlin College, Doughiska, have made it through to the Sustainable Energy Ireland's One Good Idea Competition finals with their Food Doesn't Fly computer game.

Food Doesn't Fly was created by Kinga Nuemann and Reuben Street, and is a Scratch computer game on the topic of food miles. It calculates an individual's carbon footprint as s/he shops in a virtual supermarket. The aim is to show how one good idea can make a difference to individuals, their money, and the environment.

The game draws on the idea of food miles, which are the number of miles over which a food item is transported during the journey from producer to consumer, and a unit of measurement of the fuel used to transport it. Scratch is a free visual programming language used to easily create animations, games, and educational purposes.

One Good Idea is SEAI's competition for primary and post primary schools. Students are asked to come up with an idea "that will inspire lifestyle changes in people that will save energy and help tackle climate change". Merlin College's entry is one of the Top 20 projects that will be exhibited at the national finals, which take place on May 16 in Croke Park. The team will have to make their presentation pitch to the panel of expert adjudicators before the ultimate winners are chosen.

The link to play the Food Doesn't Fly is available via www.merlincollege.ie

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