Environmentalists Making a Difference: Meet the Visionaries Protecting Our Planet


Aaron Alston

. 3 min read


Environmentalists are individuals who devote time and effort to protecting the environment. These individuals come from different backgrounds and yet have a common goal or belief. The commitments made by environmentalists address several issues in the environment. Whether it is climate change, preservation, or restoration, each environmentalist has made a positive, influential change in the environment that is worth discussing.

Meet Environmentalists Who are Changing the World?

1. Malaika Vaz

Twenty-one-year-old adventurer, wildlife presenter, filmmaker and conservationist, Malaika Vaz has no shortage of inspiration fueling her love for the outdoors. She believes that her generation is in a unique predicament: while being the first to experience the devastating impact of climate change and the loss of biodiversity, she also believes that hers may be the last generation with the power to turn things around.

She is certainly wasting no time. Over the last couple of years, Vaz has been investigating the illegal trade in manta rays across Southeast Asia tracking the pipeline from the Indo-Burmese border to the wildlife markets of Guangzhou, China. As a television host and science communicator, she has most recently presented an eight-part television series on lesser-known and endangered species titled 'On the Brink', on Discovery Channel and Animal Planet in India.

2. Hans Cosmas Ngoteya

Hans Cosmas Ngoteya is a conservationist from Tanzania with a passion for filming and photography. Hans has a deep interest in creating awareness around conservation and developing resources for conservation education. For the past three years, he's designed and worked on a project called “Vijana na Mazingira,” which means “Youths and the Environment,” in a remote village in eastern Tanzania.

The project’s location neighbors one of the country’s largest national parks, where he works with communities on sustainable environmental practices. National Geographic has awarded a grant to Hans to promote human and wildlife co-existence in Tanzania. He was among the first group of grantees selected for National Geographic’s Young Explorer Leadership and Development Program.

3. Bertie Gregory

Bertie Gregory is a 28-year-old British wildlife filmmaker and National Geographic Explorer. His career began when a childhood obsession with nature led to winning the title of 'Youth Outdoor Photographer Of The Year.’ After graduating with a degree in Zoology from the University of Bristol in 2014, he began assisting legendary National Geographic Magazine photographer Steve Winter. He has since produced and hosted 5 projects for National Geographic (‘Leopards at the Door’, ‘Jaguar Vs Croc’, ‘Wildlife’, ‘Resurrection Island’ and ’The Big Freeze’). 'Resurrection Island' won "Best Television Host" at the 2019 Jackson Wild Awards - nature film’s equivalent of the Oscars.

4. Alyssa Adler

As a young marine biologist, Alyssa Adler has had the opportunity to work as a diver in many capacities. For several years, she was a dedicated AAUS scientific diver for University of North Carolina on an offshore reef ecology project, and has participated in several of NOAA’s reef survey missions. She has been diving with National Geographic and Lindblad Expeditions as an underwater videographer and ocean educator since 2014 and has fostered a love for the poles and extreme cold-water diving, spending most of her time underwater in sub-freezing temperatures.

5. Antonella Wilby

Antonella Wilby is a robotics engineer, conservationist, and passionate explorer who builds robots to explore extreme environments. She develops cutting-edge robotics and technology to help understand ocean ecosystems, study endangered species, and map unexplored environments, with the goal of better understanding and protecting our planet. Wilby is currently a PhD student and a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow at the Contextual Robotics Institute at the University of California, San Diego.

She earned her Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from UC San Diego in 2015. Currently, Wilby's PhD research focuses on developing a swarm of robots to create detailed 3D maps of coral reefs to help ecologists better understand the dynamics of coral reef ecosystems.

6. Chandi Prasad Bhatt

Chandi Prasad Bhatt is a social activist and Indian Gandhian environmentalist. He is considered as one of India’s first modern environmentalists. In 1964, he founded Dasholi Gram Swarajya Sangh (DGSS) in Gopeshwar, which later became a mother-organization to the famous Chipko Movement. Bhatt was one of the pioneers in the Chipko movement and was awarded the Ramon Magsaysay Award for Community Leadership in 1982.

Also, in 2005, he was awarded the Padma Bhushan. He is also known for his work on subaltern social ecology.


In conclusion, environmentalists come from diverse backgrounds and share a common goal of protecting the environment. The individuals listed above are just a few examples of environmentalists who are making a positive impact on the environment in various ways. Their efforts serve as an inspiration and a call to action for individuals around the world to join in the fight against climate change, biodiversity loss, and other environmental issues. By working together, we can make a difference and create a better world for future generations.

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