The global top ten young climate activists ready to take on Donald Trump

17th July 2017
The Top Ten climate activists ready to take on Donald J Trump
They organise, research and protest: a new generation of climate activists around the world is prepared to do everything they can to protect the climate. The Ecologist has talked to young climate activist around the world. These are the top ten young climate activities working to stop Donald Trump.
In Sudan we have a war that started due to climate change


DYANNA Jaye, USA, 25 years old: Dyanna grew up in Coastal Virginia, where the damaging sea-level rise in her hometown prompted her to fight for climate action. She co-founded the Virginia Student Environmental Coalition, a statewide network advocating for 100% renewable energy in Virginia.


In 2015, Dyanna lead a US youth delegation to the UN Climate Negotiations where the Paris Agreement was adopted. Her latest work has been co-founding Sunrise Movement, an organization to create jobs in the renewables sector.


I fight climate change because I believe that we will win. I believe that we will have clean water to drink, food for everyone, and a stable climate for generations to come. I feel that I was born into an epic battle where everything is on the line for the sake of denial and profits for a wealthy few,” she says.


YUGRATNA Srivastava, India, 21 years old: Yugratna started to consult for the UNEP when she was only 13. “The fact that communities are losing their homes and life every moment makes me question the basic principles of justice and drives me to give everything I can,” Yugratna tells The Ecologist.


Yugratna works on a global scale. Leading up to the historic UN climate conference in Paris she mobilised more than 30,000 people and coordinated actions in more than 70 countries on the first day of the conference.

In Sudan we have a war that started due to climate change


She currently works as the programme coordinator of Plant for the Planet, preparing the organisation’s "Trillion Tree Campaign". Her team plan to plant enough trees to absorb up to half of man-made carbon emissions.


ZAIDON Falah, Iraq, 28 years old: There are not many climate activists in Iraq. Zaidon is one of them. He recently compared the threat of climate change to the threat of ISIS.


He has cooperated with the Iraqi Environment Department and conducts seminars and lectures to highlight the impacts of climate change and pollution. Burning fossils fuels is nothing else than “vandalism," he argues.


ARTHUR Wyns, Belgium, 24 years old: A tropical biologist by profession, Arthur is driven to fight climate change to make sure his “subject of study doesn't disappear".


He has worked as an environmental researcher across three continents. he also founded his own NGO in Belgium, focusing on community projects and education and wrote a book on the recent refugee crisis on the side. And all that before he got into climate journalism at the age of 24. Today he is a campaign manager at Climate Tracker.


JULIUS Schlumberger, Germany, 22 years old: The initial spark for Julius’s engagement was a UN simulation during which he realised that just understanding politics is not enough: “We should move things forward and push for having a say in the decisions that form the world we will live in,” Julius tells The Ecologist.


He connects young people and enables them to influence decisions themselves. In his summer holidays he conducts a summer school on international climate politics for highly talented pupils from all over Germany.


He also organises scholarships for 10 young people from the Global South to attend the UN climate summit in Germany in 2017. When 196 countries come together for this years UN climate conference in Germany- the COP, Julius coordinates the conference of the Youth (COY).The big international youth climate conference connects young climate activists from all over the world.


ANAM Zeb, Pakistan, 28 years old: Anam is identifying tactics to get climate change in the media around the world: “Outside of the major global media hubs, there is hardly any action-based research informing civil society about how to get climate change on the front pages of local newspapers."


She has lead media research projects on climate reporting in over 20 countries on 3 continents in countless languages - in 2017 alone. She identifies training and communication needs as well as obstacles to climate reporting and strategies how to get the media and public interested in climate change.


RABYIA Jaffery, United Arabic Emirates, 22 years old: Rabyia is a media activist: she initiates "viewing parties" in cafes and universities together with environmental videographers.


To increase climate awareness and encourage community engagement, she organises and mobilises social media influencers. "I am driven by fear, a sense of responsibility, and hope,” Rabyia tells The Ecologist.


NOEKA Naidoo, South Africa, 25 years old: "I always wanted somebody do something about the issues that plague our society - then I realised I was ‘somebody’.”


Neoka remembers the moment when she decided get involved in climate activism. She started studying environmental science in Durban. When the UN climate conference took place in her city in 2011, she took part in direct action and civil disobedience.


At the same time she started a research career at project 90 by 2030 and started coordinating the South African climate civil society in the lead up to  the Paris Agreement. Today she bridges international and local politics  as an international policy and energy expert working with communities.


ANDREA Gracia, Peru, 26 years old: "Spending time in the Peruvian Amazon with people who work in conservation of the tropical rain forests, made me realise how everybody can join the climate action. I learned to appreciate the resources we are given by nature which inspired me to pursue a more sustainable lifestyle,” Andrea tells The Ecologist. Andrea has worked on various youth campaigns and organised regional climate summits all over Latin America.


LINA Yassen, Sudan, 19 years old: Lina is a Sudanese environmental activist and a chemical engineering student. When she went to the UN climate summit in Marrakesh last year, she was the only journalist from her country and published in the three biggest newspapers of the country.


“In Sudan we have a war that started due to climate change and whenever I think about the amount of people who has suffered from this, I tell myself that I need to continue raising awareness,” she says. "Trump is clearly ignoring the fact that climate change kills and affects more people worldwide than terrorism,” Lina tells The Ecologist.


About This Author


Andreas Sieber is a media researcher, data-lover and passionate climber. He has organised some of the biggest youth campaigns in Germany, worked for several NGOs and coordinated the press analysis in the Saxon State chancellery. He manages partnerships and campaigns for Climate Tracker.


The Ecologist has a formidable reputation built on fifty years of investigative journalism and compelling commentary from writers across the world. Now, as we face the compound crises of climate breakdown, biodiversity collapse and social injustice, the need for rigorous, trusted and ethical journalism has never been greater. This is the moment to consolidate, connect and rise to meet the challenges of our changing world. The Ecologist is owned and published by the Resurgence Trust. Support The Resurgence Trust from as little as £1. Thank you. Donate here