11 Hispanic Climate Voices to Follow

  • Sep 15, 2023

As we celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15 to October 15, we want to highlight some of the many Hispanic climate activists who are making their voices heard in the fight against climate change. These leaders in the environmental movement are working tirelessly to protect our planet and fight for climate justice for all. Here are 11 Hispanic environmental activists to follow:

1. Alexandria Villaseñor 

Alexandria (pictured above with Xiye Bastida) is an 18-year-old climate activist and second generation Mexican-American. She began her climate activism after experiencing the Camp Fire in California, one of the deadliest wildfires in California history, in 2018. She is the founder and board president of the organization Earth Uprising, which educates and mobilizes young climate activists. She is a petitioner in Children vs Climate Crisis, a legal petition filed to the UN by 16 young climate activists to hold countries accountable for their role in the climate crisis, and an essayist in All We Can Save, a collection of uplifting essays from women in the climate movement. Follow her on Instagram @alexandriav2005.

2. Christiana Figueres 

Christiana is the former executive secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). She was one of chief architects of the Paris Climate Agreement and played a major role in its adoption. Originally from Costa Rica, she has worked in the fields of climate change, sustainable development, energy, and land use, and she currently co-hosts a climate change podcast called Outrage + Optimism, which promotes “stubborn optimism” as the way to tackle the climate crisis. Follow her on Twitter @CFigueres or Instagram @cfigueres.

3. Elizabeth Yeampierre 

Elizabeth is a Puerto Rican climate justice leader. She is the co-chair of the Climate Justice Alliance and the executive director of UPROSE, a Latino community-based organization in Brooklyn that promotes sustainability and climate justice. She was the first Latina chair appointed to the EPA’s National Environmental Justice Advisory Council and was also selected as the opening speaker at President Obama’s first White House Forum on Environmental Justice. Follow her on Twitter @yeampierre.

4. Helena Gualinga 

Helena is a 21-year-old environmental and human rights activist from a small Indigenous community in Ecuador in the Amazon rainforest. She advocates for the protection of Indigenous lands from oil companies and co-founded Polluters Out, a youth-led coalition against the fossil fuel industry. Helena spoke at the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP25) in December 2019, calling out world leaders for climate inaction. Follow her on Instagram @helenagualinga.

Helena Gualinga, an environmentalist from Ecuador, speaking

Helena Gualinga (via CNN)

5. Isaias Hernandez 

Isaias is a first-generation Mexican-American environmentalist and eco-educator. Through social platforms such as Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok, Isaias shares accessible content under his brand Queer Brown Vegan to educate people on various topics related to environmental justice and green living. Follow him on Instagram @queerbrownvegan, Twitter @queerbrownvegan, or TikTok @queerbrownvegan

6. Jamie Margolin 

Jamie is the 21-year-old founder of the youth climate organization Zero Hour, an intersectional movement of youth climate activists. As the Latina, Jewish daughter of a Colombian immigrant, she gave a TED talk about how climate change can be solved by addressing social injustices. Follow her on Twitter @Jamie_Margolin or Instagram @jamie_s_margolin.

7. Mark Magaña 

Mark is the founding president and CEO of Green Latinos, a national network of Latino environmental and conservation advocates fighting for climate justice. Mark was the first Latino to serve as senior staff at both the White House and in Congressional leadership, and he currently serves on the boards of the League of Conservation Voters, Green 2.0, and the Children’s Environmental Health Network, and the National Hispanic Leadership Agenda. Follow Mark on Twitter @markmagana and follow Green Latinos on Twitter @GreenLatinos

8. Vanessa Hauc 

Vanessa is a Peruvian, Emmy Award-winning journalist who uses her platform to educate people on environmental issues. As a Telemundo reporter, she started 5-minute story segments called Alerta Verde (or “green alert'') to share stories about environmental issues. She is also the co-founder of Sachamama, a nonprofit organization that works to educate and empower the Latino community on climate issues and the importance of preserving our planet. Follow her on Twitter @vanessahauc or Instagram @vanessahauc.

9. Xiuhtezcatl Martinez 

Xiuhtezcatl is a 23-year-old climate activist and hip hop artist of Aztec heritage. He previously served as the Youth Director of Earth Guardians, an organization that inspires and trains diverse youth to be leaders in the environmental and social justice movements. He has addressed the United Nations General Assembly and even discussed his book We Rise on The Daily Show with Trevor Noah. Follow him on Twitter @xiuhtezcatl or Instagram @xiuhtezcatl

10. Xiye Bastida 

Xiye (pictured above with Alexandria Villaseñor) is a 21-year-old climate justice activist who was born in Mexico and was raised as part of the Otomi-Toltec Indigenous community. She and her family moved to New York City after her Indigenous community in Mexico was ravaged by heavy rainfall and flooding. As a lead organizer of the Fridays For Future youth climate strikes and a co-founder of Re-Earth Initiative, Xiye works to highlight the intersectionality of the climate crisis and keep Indigenous peoples at the forefront of the climate conversation. Follow her on Twitter @xiyebastida or Instagram @xiyebeara.

11. Yessenia Funes

Yessenia is a Salvadoran-American environmental journalist. She is an editor-at-large at Atmos, where she covers topics related to the climate crisis and environmental justice. She has a weekly newsletter called Possibilities, a creative climate newsletter with a focus on community solutions. Previously, she was the senior reporter for Earther, where she closely followed the injustices of the climate crisis, and was a staff reporter at Colorlines and YES! Magazine. Follow Yessenia on Twitter @yessfun or Instagram @yessfun, and read some of her work on Atmos.

At CleanChoice Energy, we envision a world free of catastrophic climate change for all. We are grateful for these 11 climate leaders and so many others who are working alongside us to make that vision a reality.

Photo of Alexandria Villaseñor and Xiye Bastida, courtesy of Villaseñor via Instagram

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