Skip to content

Introducing the 2016 Goldman Prize Winners

The 2016 Goldman Environmental Prize winners.

April 18, 2016

Congratulations to the 2016 Goldman Environmental Prize Winners!

Destiny Watford, Curtis Bay Area, Baltimore, MD

Destiny Watford, United States

Prize winner for North America

In a community whose environmental rights had long been sidelined to make room for heavy industry, Destiny Watford inspired residents of a Baltimore neighborhood to defeat plans to build the nation’s largest trash-burning incinerator less than a mile away from her high school.

Zuzana Čaputová (in the middle), 2016 Goldman Enviromental Prize winner for Europe, in her office of NGO Via Iuris - Center for public advocacy in Pezinok, Slovakia.

Zuzana Čaputová, Slovakia

Prize winner for Europe

A public interest lawyer and mother of two, Zuzana Čaputová spearheaded a successful campaign that shut down a toxic waste dump that was poisoning the land, air and water in her community, setting a precedent for public participation in post-communist Slovakia.

Leng Ouch, Cambodia

Prize winner for Asia

In one of the most dangerous countries in the world for environmental activists, Leng Ouch went undercover to document illegal logging in Cambodia and exposed the corruption robbing rural communities of their land, causing the government to cancel large land concessions.

At every step of the way in the 16-year battle to protect the corridor, Rivera Herrera was there to challenge government corruption and advocate for the public’s right to demand protection for the environment. (Photo: Goldman Environmental Prize)

Luis Jorge Rivera Herrera, Puerto Rico

Prize winner for Islands & Island Nations

Luis Jorge Rivera Herrera helped lead a successful campaign to establish a nature reserve in Puerto Rico’s Northeast Ecological Corridor—an important nesting ground for the endangered leatherback sea turtle—and protect the island’s natural heritage from harmful development.

IMG_9457

Máxima Acuña, Peru

Prize winner for South & Central America

A subsistence farmer in Peru’s northern highlands, Máxima Acuña stood up for her right to peacefully live off her own land, a property sought by Newmont and Buenaventura Mining to develop the Conga gold and copper mine.

072V9491

Edward Loure, Tanzania

Prize winner for Africa

Edward Loure led a grassroots organization that pioneered an approach that gives land titles to indigenous communities—instead of individuals—in northern Tanzania, ensuring the environmental stewardship of more than 200,000 acres of land for future generations.


Don’t miss watching these activists receive their awards and join us as we stream live on April 18.

Recent Posts

Prize Winners Today: How Makoma Lekalakala is Shaping South Africa's Clean Energy Transition


October 4, 2022 – By Ellen Lomonico

Meeting Environmental Justice Leader, Makoma Lekalakala Dressed in vibrant colors and a traditional VhaVenda headscarf, Makoma Lekalakala is a striking figure, even on a pixelated computer screen. It was nighttime in South Africa; Makoma joined our call having recently flown into Durban. “I go where the people are,” she shared. Sometimes that means Johannesburg, sometimes…

Read more

Goldman Prize Winners Call for Release of Nguy Thi Khanh


September 13, 2022

Today, 52 Goldman Environmental Prize winners sent a letter to the members of the UN Human Rights Council in support of Nguy Thi Khanh, the 2018 Goldman Environmental Prize winner from Vietnam. Khanh is serving a two-year prison sentence in Vietnam for the alleged crime of tax evasion, widely understood as punishment for being an…

Read more

Stopping the Spill: How Oil Is Changing Our Earth


August 22, 2022 – By Jacqueline Kehoe

News headlines every few years can leave the impression that oil spills are rare, one-off events, like BP’s Deepwater Horizon spill in 2010 or the 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster. In reality, they happen constantly: Over 700 million gallons of waste oil reach the ocean every year, destroying entire ecosystems and communities. Beyond its role in…

Read more