Updated: Jul 28, 2021
A pandemic has shattered our world. Almost 3 million lives have been lost. Economies have collapsed. Across the world, people are scared and anxious.
And you want to talk about climate change?
Yes, says Vanessa Nakate, a 24-year-old climate activist from Uganda. Now.
Africa contributed only 3% of global emissions, but yet, is the continent that is paying the highest price. Extreme weather events, dry spells, and sea-level rise are threatening food security, health, and socio-economic development on the continent at an alarming rate. And it is people of color that are the least listened to in the climate movement. Vanessa Nakate has experienced this on a personal level, when she was cropped out of a photo of climate activists at a WEF press conference in January 2020. She was the only African activist at the event and the only one that was cropped.
For the last three years, Vanessa has been campaigning to urge political leaders to stop subsidizing fossil fuels, led “Save Congo’s rainforest” strikes, demanded climate change education for children in Uganda schools, worked on projects that involve the installation of solar and institutional stoves in schools, and founded the Rise Up Climate Movement, which aims to amplify the voices of activists from Africa.
Her goal: Make sure that African issues are heard on a global stage.
Can you think of other inspiring Black female activists who are currently shaping history and helping Black issues rise above invisibility?
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