Finalists for the fifth annual Central Ohio Emerald Awards have been selected by an independent judging panel, and they include Whetstone High School student Sarah Weaver.

Finalists for the fifth annual Central Ohio Emerald Awards have been selected by an independent judging panel, and they include Whetstone High School student Sarah Weaver.

The awards are presented by the Solid Waste Authority of Central Ohio in seven categories to honor businesses and individuals for recycling and other efforts that reduce the amount of waste going to the landfill.

This year's Emerald Awards business luncheon will take place from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Thursday, May 13, at the Aladdin Shrine Center, 3850 Stelzer Road.

Weaver, a sophomore at Whetstone High and the daughter of Laura and Mark Weaver of the Devonshire neighborhood, is one of three nominees in the "Young and Green" category for students. She sought to increase public awareness about the importance of recycling by creating a Web site, www.sarahrecycles.com.

The other Young and Green finalists are Amanda Liu of Hilliard Davidson High School, who joined the Environmental Awareness Club at her school and began a recycling effort that involved approximately 200 classrooms and Amelia Pierson of Westerville North High School, a Recycling Club member who created school hall passes made from recycled paper.

The winners will receive their awards, which are made from recycled green glass, from SWACO executive director Ron Mills and board of trustees president Bradley Frick.

The Young and Green Award, honoring students ages 12 to 18, is new this year. Finalists also will be vying for top honors in Entrepreneurship, Environmental Education, Leadership, Litter Clean-up, Partnership and Innovation.