THEY are the green heroes who dedicate themselves to saving the planet — and today we want to say thank you.
To celebrate Earth Day, The Sun’s Green Team has teamed up with ethical energy firm Bulb to honour the nation’s leading eco-warriors with personalised green plaques for their vital work.
Our worthy winners include Heather Kent, 13, who collected more than 100 bags of litter over Lent.
The youngster, from Fairford, Gloucs, also does a clean-up of her local town at least once a week.
Mum Julie, 42, who nominated her, told The Sun: “There are days where she doesn’t want to go out but she always does and it’s second nature now.
“She is proof that it doesn’t matter how little you do, you can make a huge difference. As Heather says, a bag a day keeps the litter away.”
The 4Ts Youth Project in Barnsley has seen the town’s youth council secure funding for local kids to transform an area of abandoned land into something they can call their own — while planting more than 400 trees in the process.
The Terrific Tree Task, dubbed “The 4Ts”, saw the group of teens clean up the area and begin a three- year regeneration programme.
Local resident Adele Saywell, who nominated the group, said she was proud of the kids for inspiring adults with their passion for the planet.
Waste-warrior Vikki Shea is on a mission to inspire everyone she meets to make green changes.
The 35-year-old, from Aylesbury, Bucks, promotes car-share karaoke and walk-to-work schemes for colleagues at her job in waste management.
And she urges the firm’s suppliers to buy local to cut emissions.
She told us: “All these changes, from turning off your computer monitor at the end of the day to taking the stairs rather than a lift, can make a huge difference at work.”
Walking down a busy street with her young baby, Jemima Hartshorn, from South East London, feared the impact car pollution was having on her little one.
The 38-year-old, who has daughters Trissie, four, and Lea, two, went on to found campaign group Mums For Lungs while on maternity leave in 2017.
In 2019, she was named as one of the year’s most influential Londoners for her Ditch Pollution campaign, which encouraged parents and kids to walk to school.
More than 12,000 parents now form part of her community groups to raise awareness of toxic air.
Jemima said: “We’re not going to save the planet alone — we need everyone to step up.”
Aged just 18, blogger Mya-Rose Craig, from Bristol, campaigns for equal access to nature for everyone.
She says: “Inclusive access to nature will help to save it as we need to get as many people as possible interested in the conservation movement.
“Nature has helped me through stressful times and is therefore really important to me, especially preserving this resource and taking urgent action to tackle the climate crisis for mine and future generations.”
Join The Sun’s ‘Green Team’ & save the planet
MAKING simple everyday changes can add up to a BIG difference to the planet.
And we want you and your family to join The Sun’s Green Team – our eco revolution.
It can feel overwhelming to know how to play a part in reducing greenhouse gasses, but we will be showing you the practical steps we can take to curb climate change – with the help of the global ‘Count Us In’ initiative.
And our easy measures will even help you SAVE money so your household budget goes further.
We’ll help you to reduce food waste, insulate your home, create tasty planet-friendly meals and take simple steps to trim your carbon footprint.
We want you to go online to sign-up to as many of our special Green Team pledges as you can manage and a special calculator will show you how much carbon you will personally save.
It won’t cost you a penny but the total you and your family will save will be added to the global ‘Count Us In’ total and the platform will support you every step of the way.
So tap here to pledge.
A similar desire saw Judy Ling Wong leave her career as an artist to establish the Black Environment Network, which forges relationships between people from ethnic minorities and the environment.
In 2007, Judy, 71, from South London, was honoured with a CBE for her work.
She said: “We must all work together to protect green spaces and ensure environmental education is top of the agenda.”