Environmentalists Susan Chomba & Wanjira Mathai Featured on BBC 100 Women 2023

BBC 100 Women list has been released, and Kenyan scientist Susan Chomba and Environmental Advisor Wanjira Mathai are featured.

The list which features former US First Lady Michelle Obama and human rights lawyer Amal Clooney highlights climate pioneers as well as women in culture and education.

Women in Entertainment & Sports, Politics & Advocacy as well Science, Health and Tech are also featured on list.

“In a year where extreme heat, wildfires, floods and other natural disasters have been dominating headlines ….

The BBC 100 Women highlights women who have been working to help their communities tackle climate change and take action to adjust to its impacts.”  Revealed BBC.

One such woman is director of the World Resources Institute (WRI) Susan Chomba who protects forests, restoring landscapes and transforming Africa’s food systems.

Susan Chomba on working with women and youth across Africa to protect and restore nature while transforming food systems and changing policies

Speaking on why she ventured into protecting forests, restoring landscapes and transforming Africa’s food systems, Chomba said her experience of childhood poverty in Kirinyaga county motivates her to help improve the lives of others.

“I’m more affected by the inaction of world leaders, especially from the major emitters, who also have the economic power to change course but are held back by money, power and politics. 

To manage those feelings, I bury myself in actions on the ground, working with women and youth across Africa on nature protection and restoration, transforming our food systems and changing policies.” Said chomba.

Chomba now shares her expertise with governments and researchers to build more resilient communities in the face of intensifying climate change.

Wanjira Mathai on supporting local environmental initiatives

Environmental Advisor Wanjira Mathai also featured on BBC 100 Women, has been spearheading advocacy for social and environmental change for over 20 years. 

Mathai is the managing director for Africa and Global Partnerships at the World Resources Institute, and chair of the Wangari Maathai Foundation led the Green Belt Movement.

The indigenous grassroots organisation empowers women through the planting of trees, established by Wanjira’s mother and winner of the 2004 Nobel Peace Prize, Wangari Maathai.

Mathai who also serves as Africa adviser to the Bezos Earth Fund, as well as to the Clean Cooking Alliance and the European Climate Foundation said their is need to focus on local action. 

“Action is “Local” She said adding …

“We need to support local initiatives like tree-based entrepreneurs and community-led work around restoration, renewable energy and the circular economy. 

Bottom-up efforts like these give Mr hope as they show us what is possible.” Said Mathai.