Meet the Climate Heroes Coming to Davos

 

Impressions from the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2020 in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, 18 January. Copyright by World Economic Forum/Mattias Nutt January.

This year’s World Economic Forum 2020 Annual Meeting will be more action-oriented than ever. Or, in the words of Founder and Executive Chairman Klaus Schwab, a “Do shop, not a talk shop.” Helping bring about systemic change to return our planet to a sustainable path will be an unprecedented number of leaders from across civil society making progress at the community, national and global level, including:

Teenage changemakers

  • Fionn Ferreira (Netherlands): as a young scientist, Fionn has created a project extracting micro plastics from water and aims to prevent them from reaching oceans.
  • Ayakha Melithafa (South Africa): this 17 year-old South African advocates for low-carbon footprint in her community and advocates for the inclusion of diverse voices in climate activism.
  • Autumn Peltier (Canada): Autumn has been advocating for water conservation since the age of 8 and is Anishinabek’s Chief Water Commissioner, representing over 40 First Nations in Canada.
  • Greta Thunberg (Sweden): Greta is an International climate activist and leader of the school strike for climate movement
  • Melati Wijsen (Indonesia): with her initiative Bye Bye Plastics that she founded with her sister, she has banned plastic bags, straws and Styrofoam on Bali since 2019.

Civil Society and Academia

  • Gary Bencheghib (Indonesia): Gary’s film-making has brought home the impact of environmental degradation to millions of people. For example in a film he made navigating the world’s most polluted river in Java in a kayak made of plastic bottles
  • Kerstin Forsberg (Peru): Kerstin has lead dozens of community-based environmental projects in Peru, engaging hundreds of citizen scientists and over 50 schools in marine education.
  • Salvador Gómez-Colón (Puerto Rico): after Huricanne Maria devastated Puerto Rico in 2017, Salvador developed project ‘Light and Hope’ which supported over 3000 families with solar lamps and manual washing machines.
  • Jane Goodall (USA): A world-renowned primatologist, Jane’s work has paved redefined the relationship between humans and animals
  • Krithi Karanth (India): As Chief Conservation Scientist and Director of the Centre for Wildlife Studies, Kirithi’s work focuses on human-animal conflict and land use change
  • Wanjuhi Njoroge (Kenya): A Global Shaper, Wanjuhi founded #SaveOurForestsKE a campaign that raised awareness about the decimation of forests and led to a nine-month ban on national forest logging in the country.
  • Carlos Afonso Nobre (Brazil): Carlos dedicated his career to the Amazon region and developed pioneer research on the climate impacts of deforestation.
  • Johan Rockström (Germany): Johan’s work developing the planetary boundaries framework that facilitates human development while defending the planet’s boundaries is regarded as seminal.
  • Lord Nicholas Stern (UK): Lord Stern’s seminal 2006 study on the economics of climate change was the first of its kind to quantify the cost of climate change.
  • Holly Syrett (Netherlands): Holly led a grassroots approach in 40 cities for citizens to re-use, re-purpose, buy less, buy second-hand and use their purchasing-power to support items that respect people and planet.
  • Neel Tamhane (Bangladesh): Neel’s citizen-led tree-planting drive has already planted 9 billion trees in 27 cities in South Asia.
  • Asha de Vos (Sri Lanka): Asha founded the Sri Lankan Blue Whale Project in 2008, the first long term study on blue whales within the northern Indian Ocean

The World Economic Forum is also showcasing a series of installations, including Partnering with Nature, developed in collaboration with the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, the Algae Platform by Atelier Luma and Department of Seaweed by Julia Lohmann, two projects exploring the potential of algae as an alternative to conventional materials such as plastic; and Totomoxtle by designer Fernando Laposse which aims to reintroduce native varieties and restore indigenous farming practices in Mexico.

The meeting brings together nearly 3,000 global leaders from politics, government, civil society, academia, the arts and culture as well as the media. Convening under the theme, Stakeholders for a Cohesive and Sustainable World, participants will focus on defining new models for building sustainable and inclusive societies in a plurilateral world.

The World Economic Forum Annual Meeting brings together governments, international organizations, business, civil society, media, culture, foremost experts and the young generation from all over the world, at the highest level and in representative ways. It engages some 50 heads of state and government, more than 300 ministerial-level government participants and business representation at the chief executive officer and chair level. For further information, please click here.

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