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Climate & Energy

Fighting for the sustainability of our planet

Our planet is changing at an unprecedented rate.

Melting ice caps, wildfires, floods, droughts, and other intensifying weather patterns are regional symptoms of a warming planet. Established science is clear: climate trends over the past century are indisputably caused by human activities. The extraction and burning of fossil fuels to power modern societies has resulted in the preeminent challenge of our time: climate change.

We are the first generation to experience that our actions have had consequences for our climate. We are probably the last generation that can still do something about it.

Slovakia, 2016
Zuzana Čaputová

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Goldman Prize Winners awarded for Climate & Energy

Marjan Minnesma

Marjan Minnesma

2022 Goldman Prize Winner
Climate & Energy
Europe
The Netherlands

In a groundbreaking victory, Marjan Minnesma leveraged public input and a unique legal strategy to secure a successful ruling against the Dutch government, requiring it to enact specific preventive measures against climate change. In December 2019, the Dutch Supreme Court ruled that the government had a legal obligation to protect its citizens from climate change and ordered it, by the end of 2020, to slash greenhouse gas emissions by 25% below 1990 levels. The Netherlands’ Supreme Court decision marks the first time that citizens succeeded in holding their government accountable for its failure to protect them from climate change.


Julien Vincent

2022 Goldman Prize Winner
Climate & Energy
Islands & Island Nations
Australia

Julien Vincent led a successful grassroots campaign to defund coal in Australia, a major coal exporter, culminating in commitments from the nation’s four largest banks to end funding for coal projects by 2030. Because of Julien’s activism, Australia’s major insurance companies have also agreed to cease underwriting new coal projects. His organizing has produced a challenging financial landscape for the Australian coal industry, a significant step toward reducing fossil fuels that hasten climate change.


Kimiko Hirata

2021 Goldman Prize Winner
Climate & Energy
Islands & Island Nations
Japan

After the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster of 2011, Japan was forced to move away from nuclear power and, in its place, embraced coal as a major energy source. Over the past several years, Kimiko Hirata’s grassroots campaign led to the cancellation of 13 coal power plants (7GW or 7,030MW) in Japan. These coal plants would have released more than 1.6 billion tons of CO2 over their lifetimes. The carbon impact of Hirata’s activism is the equivalent of taking 7.5 million passenger cars off the road every year for 40 years.


Chibeze Ezekiel

2020 Goldman Prize Winner
Climate & Energy
Africa
Ghana

As a direct result of Chibeze Ezekiel’s four-year grassroots campaign, the Ghanaian Minister of Environment canceled the construction of a 700-megawatt (MW) coal power plant and adjoining shipping port to import coal. The coal power plant would have been Ghana’s first. Ezekiel’s activism stopped the coal industry from entering Ghana and steered the nation’s energy future away from coal.


Lucie Pinson

Lucie Pinson

2020 Goldman Prize Winner
Climate & Energy
Europe
France

In 2017, Lucie Pinson’s activism successfully pressured France’s three largest banks to eliminate financing for new coal projects and coal companies. She then compelled French insurance companies to follow suit: between 2017 and 2019, mega insurers AXA and SCOR announced plans to end insurance coverage for coal projects.


Linda Garcia

2019 Goldman Prize Winner
Climate & Energy
North America
United States

Linda Garcia organized Fruit Valley residents to stop the construction of the Tesoro Savage oil export terminal in Vancouver, Washington, in February 2018. Her activism safeguarded residents from harmful air pollution and protected the environment of the Columbia River Gorge. By preventing North America’s largest oil terminal from being built, Garcia halted the flow of 11 million gallons of crude oil per day from North Dakota to Washington.


Partners in Climate & Energy

The Goldman Prize is honored to partner with a variety of environmental organizations around the world, each of them united in the goal of protecting our planet. From our nominating partners to global organizations to grassroots NGOs led by Prize winners, they are all essential parts of the environmental community.

  • 350.org logo
  • Climate Reality Project logo
  • Sunrise Project logo
  • NRDC logo
  • Climate Works Foundation logo
  • Equation Campaign logo
  • Urgewald logo
  • GreenID logo
  • Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs logo
  • Reclaim Finance logo