CNN’s ‘Going Green’ meets the next generation of environmentalists leading the charge against climate change

Special coverage airs July 18-22, with a 30-minute program airing July 23

HONG KONG, July 20, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Protecting our planet often means starting small – but every action has the potential to spark a global transformation. On the upcoming episode of 'Going Green', CNN meets the next generation of young environmentalists who are sprinting into action and bringing their innovations to life to protect every corner of the earth.

CNN’s ‘Going Green’ meets the next generation of environmentalists leading the charge against climate change
CNN’s ‘Going Green’ meets the next generation of environmentalists leading the charge against climate change

CNN hears from Melati Wijsen from Bali, Indonesia, who started a youth campaign to make the island plastic bag free when she was just 12 years old. After several years, and a conversation with the governor, she succeeded – and a law was passed banning single use plastics. Now, Wijsen has launched YOUTHTOPIA, a platform where young people can learn from each other about how to create change. YOUTHTOPIA now runs 150 free youth workshops and programs for young changemakers focusing on tackling the climate crisis through education.

We also meet Fionn Ferreira, a 21-year-old student from Ireland on a mission to remove microplastics from our oceans. Ferreira is building an ingenious way to collect these particles by using a magnetic mixture to extract plastics from liquid. He won the Google Science Fair in 2019 with his invention, as well as a financial boost to jumpstart a pilot program in a wastewater facility in Ohio. Since then, Ferreira's work has taken him all the way to the Arctic to continue his research, and most recently to the World Economic Forum where he helped bring together young changemakers to share their perspectives on the global agenda.

The programme then travels to Nairobi, Kenya, to meet a teenager hoping to use football to inspire young people to create a greener environment. Lesein Mutunkei is the founder of Trees 4 Goals, an initiative which began when Mutunkei decided he would mark every goal he scored playing football by planting a tree. What began as a solo endeavour has kicked off across Kenya – bringing a culture of conservation to a wider team of players. Mutunkei also sows with intent: he only plants indigenous trees to maintain ecosystem balance, and has been working with a team of other young environmentalists to help revive the country's forests.

It's then off to the Amazon rainforest to hear from Helena Gualinga, an Indigenous rights and climate justice advocate who hails from the Sarayaku community in Ecuador. For decades Amazonian women in Ecuador have been empowered and outspoken about protecting the rainforest. Gualinga is amplifying that message and spreading her tribe's worldview at climate change conferences across the globe, giving first-hand accounts of life in the Amazon and the impact that deforestation is having on the rainforest.

CNN also travels to the land of the First Nations in Canada to meet Autumn Peltier, an Indigenous rights and water activist. Peltier shares how she became interested in water protection after a trip to a nearby Indigenous community whose water sources were polluted, making the tap water undrinkable. She has spent the past eight years speaking out about the importance of clean water to international organizations like the UN and the World Economic Forum. Peltier also explains why she believes the fight for clean water is in the hands of young people.

Going Green trailer: 
Going Green images: 
Going Green microsite: 

Airtimes for 30-minute special:
Saturday, 23rd July at 12:30pm HKT
Sunday, 24th July at 12:30am, 9:30am and 6:00pm HKT

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