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BEIJING, September 11, Chinadaily -- Three young Chinese were honored Tuesday as the winners of an environmental project contest for their ideas and efforts in environmental and ecological protection.

The project, Young Champion of the Earth in China, was jointly launched by Chinese social network Sina Weibo and the United Nations Environment Programme in April. It aims to seek budding eco-warriors, aged 18 to 30, who have inspiring ideas on how to save the environment.

After a five-month online poll and review by an experts' panel, Wang Miao, Luo Yi and Zhu Chuanhui stood out from hundreds of candidates, and were named champions for their performance in safeguarding oceans, improving sustainable development in rural areas and advocating environmental protection through comic books.

Zhu, for example, is the author of Andy's Adventure, a fairy tale that introduces nature, wildlife and how important it is to protect the environment.

The comic is based on a 10-year-old boy in cartoon form called Andy. Zhu said after receiving the award that he hopes the story can guide more children to understand what the world is and how to save the earth.

Many young people on Sina Weibo, China's Twitter-like online platform, are interested in environmental protection and engaged in charities, "so providing the new generation with such a chance will contribute to leading the country in safeguarding our environment and beautifying our country," a statement from the company said.

Xu Zheng, a popular Chinese film director and actor, also participated in Tuesday's award ceremony and shared his experiences and opinions on protecting the environment, as well.

"Environmental protection not only needs ideas, but also action," he said. "What the three winners are doing is a good example for the public, which will encourage more people to join the team."

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