You don’t have to wear a superhero suit to be a hero. You don’t need a force field, or an infinity stone. You don’t even need to be able to vote!
Inspired by Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg (who’s been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize for the second consecutive year) young people are now charging ahead in the climate change fight.
Kids are founding their own companies, searching to solve the removal of plastics from the oceans, planting millions of trees in partnership with the United Nations, litigating for the right to a world unplagued by global warming, and making massive change in their communities.
In October 2021, Earth911 recognized young environmentalists with annual its eco-hero awards.
Have climate heroes to share? Have you taken action to address the climate crisis? We’d love to hear about what you’re doing and who is inspiring you!
Here’s some of the kids who inspire us.
CREDIT: YALE CLIMATE CONNECTIONS
Climate Change Activist
Founded Kids vs. Global Warming and iMatter
Alec Loorz was 12 when he put up his SLAP (Sea Level Awareness Posts) on a Ventura, California beach. At 15, he presented a Declaration of Independence from Fossil Fuels to senator Barbara Boxer on Capitol Hill. He believes his generation is poised to inherit a world where mass production, environmental degradation and the burning of fossil fuels has put the future of human society at risk. He is one of seven youth plaintiffs who sued the federal government on behalf of youth everywhere in an attempt to take Washington to task on climate change (they lost). He is a youth leader with the Alliance for Climate Education.
Climate Change Activist
Co-founder and co-director for the Youth for Climate Strike
13-year-old Alexandria Villasenor has, every week since December 2018, made a pilgrimage to the United Nations’ headquarters demanding action on climate change. She is one of a cadre of young, fierce and mostly female activists behind the School Strike 4 Climate movement. On March 15, 2019, with the support of some of the world’s biggest environmental groups, tens of thousands of kids in at least two dozen countries and nearly 30 U.S. states plan to skip school to protest.
Teenage activist and journalist
Jamie Margolin started This Is Zero Hour at only 16 years old, by organizing her friends in Washington D.C. to start demanding common sense climate laws from their political representatives. She has started a national youth movement demanding the right to a sustainable future.
9 year old started “Be Straw Free” campaign
Americans use about 500 million straws each day. The number is based on research conducted years ago by an enterprising 9-year-old Vermont boy named Milo Cress. He started “Be Straw Free,” a campaign to persuade restaurants to offer straws optionally rather than automatically. His anti-waste campaign received early coverage from local media in Vermont, but soon the fourth grader’s campaign was featured by outlets across the country, earning wide coverage for his cause — and the startling statistic.