Mother Nature’s Natural Heroes
Here’s to our Natural Heroes—people who work to fight climate change in big and small ways. Anyone can become a Natural Hero for giving back to the Earth and promoting sustainability. It will take the collective effort of humans everywhere to Reclaim Planet Earth.
Here are some recipients of Natural Heroes honors:
Climate Activist Edgar McGregor Cleaned an LA Park Every Day for Two Years. You won’t find any trash or litter is Eaton Canyon, a park near Los Angeles. Thanks to the continued two-year efforts of 20-year-old climate activist Edgar McGregor, the only thing you’ll find is Mother Nature at her finest.
Even when a raging fire was miles from the park, Edgar showed up to clean-up, making sure every day was Earth Day. He posts his planet-cleaning efforts daily to ignite his 23,000 followers to undertake their own eco-friendly actions.
Andrew Forest Backs Sustainable Energy at a Risk of Losing his Billion-Dollar Company. Dr. Andrew Forest leads a climate change revolution, risking his immensely profitable $10.3 billion-dollar enterprise to become a renewable energy powerhouse.
Even though he could lose his billion-dollar company if his plans to decarbonize by 2030 go wrong, Andrew Forest is putting the planet ahead of his own personal gain.
Pratt Paper Company Is 100% Recyclable. The Pratt Paper Company is an environmental champion without equal. Every day, the Pratt Paper Company, the world’s largest, privately held, 100% recycled paper and packaging company saves 85,000 trees, 25 million gallons of water, 20 million kWh of electricity and 5,000 tons of greenhouse gas emissions.
Thirty-four years ago, the Pratt Paper Company made a decision to put the planet and its people on an equal footing with profit and they’ve honored that commitment ever since.
Google Maps Eco-Friendly Team Takes 100,00 Cars off the Road. Transportation accounts for about one third of US greenhouse gases. So, the eco-friendly team at Google Maps added a Green Leaf to trips to indicate the most fuel-efficient routes to take.
Googles estimates the Green Leaf app could remove up to one million tons of carbon emissions from the air. Even if it only removes half that amount, it’s the equivalent of removing 100,000 cars from the roads.
Greta Thunberg Has Been the World’s Most Intense Climate Activist. Greta Thunberg will never care she was selected one of Mother Nature’s Natural Hero. She turned down more important awards because, “The climate movement doesn’t need another prize. The climate needs action!” Nevertheless, we’d be remiss if we didn’t acknowledge the firebrand climate activist who has ignited millions to climate action.
Greta’s foundation, the Who Foundation, is a force for urgently needed better global health solutions. We gave Greta Thunberg this award to encourage others to donate to her Foundation.
David Jankowsky–EV Charge Station Pioneer. A major obstacle to the future success of EVs is there aren’t enough charging stations, especially in underserved areas. David Jankowsky, CEO of Frances Energy is working hard to change that.
He has been installing fast charging stations in remote areas of the Great Plains, from tribal reservations to lonely sections of Route 66. Customers pay 32 cents a minute (around $20) to repower an electric pick-up truck to about 80% capacity.
Climate Neutral Certifies Companies’ Sustainability. United Kingdom non-profit, Carbon Neutral, has given its carbon neutral certification to 338 companies. Carbon neutrality means that a company has acquired enough carbon offsets—credits representing emissions averted or removed from the atmosphere—to equal to its operational emissions over a given period of time.
Marcon Trombettti and Isabelle Andrieu Were Inspired by Albert Einstein’s Father. Tech uses up a huge amount of electricity. It is estimated the amount of electrical energy used worldwide by computers to mine bitcoin, for example, is equal to the electrical energy used in a year by the Netherlands.
Husband and wife team Marcon Trombettti and Isabelle Andrieu will use a hydroelectric powerplant created by Hermann Einstein, Albert’s father, to power their artificial intelligence start-up. Mother Nature salutes their ingenuity and desire to help the planet’s sustainability.
Michael Doss–Reducing the Waste of 25 Billion Styrofoam Cups. Americans throw away 25 billion non-biodegradable Styrofoam cups every year. Instead of breaking into smaller pieces and disintegrating, they break into tiny pieces that can stay in the environment for hundreds of years.
Michael Doss, CEO, Graphic Packaging Holding Company, built a $600 million dollar facility to turn mountains of recycled cardboard into paperboard suitable for greener forms of packaging. His new facility is the first paperboard production line built in the US in decades.
Frances Moore Lappe Her Book, Diet for a Small Planet, Changed the Way America Eats. Frances Moore Lappe’s book, Diet for a Small Planet, written in 1971, was a groundbreaking book that argued American ate too much meat and that meat-centered meals were an enormous waste of resources.
She turned vegetarianism into an honored way of nourishing ourselves and helping the sustainability of our dwindling resources. Her efforts led to an entire change in American diets and revolutionized the food sold in supermarkets and grocery stores.
Larry Fink Is a Tireless and Important Proponent of the Need to Fight Climate Change. As Chairman and CEO of Black Rock, the world’s largest investment firm, he is using his firm’s influence to convince companies to eliminate greenhouse gasses by 2050 because it would “be in the best interests of their shareholders’ long-term profits”. Now that’s the way to get businesses behind climate change!
The letter Fink sent to the world’s largest corporations got Earth-friendly results. Microsoft announced a plan to be carbon-negative by 2030. Salesforce pledged to conserve or restore 100 million trees over the next decade. And Delta Air Lines announced a $1 billion effort to be carbon-neutral in 10 years.
Erika Domanico, Fashion Re-Designer Gives New Life to Unwanted Clothing and Textiles. It takes tremendous energy to produce clothing. A basic cotton t-shirt requires about 12kWH of energy-equal to turning on an LED bulb for 50 straight days. The average American throws away over 80 lbs. of clothing a year.
Erika Domanico, Fashion Re-Designer for Sassy Scraps Upcycled Boutique, buys used clothing and textiles, like curtains and sheets, and redesigns them into one-of-a-kind clothing. By combining her skills as a fashion designer with her desire to make the planet more sustainable, Erika is truly one of my Natural Heroes for forging a business that promotes sustainability and recycling resources that would otherwise add to our landfills.
Elon Musk supercharged the electronic vehicle (EV) market at a time well before it was a proven technology. There is no doubt Elon is an opinionated, egocentric, take-no-prisoners billionaire. I could use a few more courageous humans like him. Against all odds, he singlehandedly turned the potential of electric powered vehicles into a reality when he launched Tesla in 2002. As Chairman and Chief Engineer of Space X, he built the Mars exploration company into a pioneering giant of space exploration.
Who knows? I may need to buy a ticket to Mars if humans don’t take appropriate action on climate change. Hmm, Mother Mars. I wonder how I’ll look in red.?
Richard W. Emory. Jr. is a career pollution crime fighter, whistle blower and EPA insider. He served as our nation’s top lawyer directly responsible for the EPA’s investigations of pollution crime. Then, for 17 years he worked globally often in collaboration with the United Nation’s Environment Programme (UNEP) or the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)
to ensure other nations had access to clean air and clean water.
His book, Fighting Pollution and Climate Change: an EPA Veteran’s Guide-How to Join in Saving Our Life Planet Earth, reviews the history, science, and laws of pollution control, offering tools currently available (were there the will) to controlman-made climate change.