AN aspiring geologist with a passion for the environment, 20-year-old Sherine Lata hopes to deliver her message on the environment during the week-long Sugar Festival in Lautoka.
Representing Coolman Refrigeration and Electrical Services, Ms Lata said she wanted to highlight issues surrounding climate change.
"Climate change is a reality and people need to know more about it more than ever now. We don't have to go far to see the effects of global warming," said Ms Lata.
"I'd like to advocate the issues about sea level rise. People need to be aware of these activities so that these natural disasters are controlled."
Ms Lata said pollution was a major contributing factor to sea level rise and something she hoped to highlight.
"We have a lot of industrial areas and although they may not give off as much waste as those by bigger countries, it's still something we need to address," she said.
Pursuing a bachelors degree in land use and planning at the USP, Ms Lata said she hoped to spread her message about the deteriorating state of the environment.
"It would be a good stage to get the message across and I also hope to learn new things during this experience," she said.
Listing her hobbies as socialising, travelling and dancing, Ms Lata looks forward to being part of the 2012 Sugar Festival.
"I've always wanted to enter a pageant like this. I tried many times to be a contestant at the Hibiscus Festival but I didn't get through but I kept trying and the Sugar Festival organisers gave me a chance.
"This was my last hope and I hope to make my sponsors and my family proud," she said.
Ms Lata is one of six contestants vying for the 2012 Miss Sugar Festival crown.