Champions of the Earth
The United Nations Environment Programme established Champions of the Earth in 2004 as an annual awards programme to recognize outstanding environmental leaders at a policy level. Six awards are given out each year to a Laureate representing different geographical regions with one additional special prize.
The Champions of the Earth are invited to accept their award at an international ceremony, which publicizes and encourages the worldwide replication of the achievements of the Champions.
- Afroz Shah - Inspiration and Action
- Berta Cáceres - Inspiration and Action
- José Sarukhán Kermez - Lifetime Achievement
- Leyla Acaroglu - Science and Innovation
- The Moroccan Agency for Solar Energy (MASEN) - Entrepreneurial Vision
- Paul Kagame - Policy Leadership
- Prime minister Sheikh Hasina, Bangladesh - Policy Leadership
- Black Mamba APU - Inspiration & Action
- The National Geographic Society - Science & Innovation
- Natura Brasil - Entrepreneurial Vision
- Paul Polman - Entrepreneural Vision
- Boyan Slat - Inspiration and Action
- Fatima Jibrell, Somalia - Environmental conservation
- Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono - Policy Leadership
- Tommy Remengesau, Jr - Policy Leadership
- Mario José Molina-Pasquel Henríquez - Lifetime Leadership
- Robert Watson (scientist) - Science and Innovation
- Sylvia Earle - Lifetime Leadership
- U.S. Green Building Council - Entrepreneurial Vision
- Janez Potočnik - Policy Leadership
- Brian McClendon - Entrepreneurial Vision
- Carlo Petrini - Inspiration and Action
- Izabella Teixeira - Policy Leadership
- Jack Dangermond - Entrepreneurial Vision
- Martha Isabel Ruiz Corzo - Inspiration and Action
- Veerabhadran Ramanathan - Science and Innovation
- President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj, Mongolia - Policy Leadership category
- Fabio Coletti Barbosa, Brazil (CEO of Grupo Abril) and Dr Sultan Ahmed al Jaber, United Arab Emirates (CEO of Masdar)- Entrepreneurial Vision category
- Bertrand Piccard, Switzerland - Inspiration and Action category
- Sander Van der Leeuw, Netherlands - Science and Innovation category
- Samson Parashina, Kenya - Special Category for Grassroots Initiatives
- President Felipe Calderón, Mexico - Policy Leadership Category
- Dr. Olga Speranskaya, Russia - Science & Innovation Category
- Zhang Yue, Broad Group, China - Entrepreneurial Vision Category
- Louis Palmer, Switzerland - Inspiration & Action Category [co-winner]
- Angélique Kidjo, Benin - Inspiration & Action Category co-winner
- [Veerabhadran Ramanathan]
- President Mohamed Nasheed, Maldives - Policy Leadership Category
- Taro Takahashi, Japan - Science & Innovation Category
- Vinod Khosla, India - Entrepreneurial Vision Category
- Prince Mostapha Zaher, Afghanistan - Inspiration & Action Category [co-winner]
- Zhou Xun, China - Inspiration & Action Category co-winner
- Special Award
- Erik Solheim, Norway - Policy Leadership Category (co-winner)
- Kevin Conrad and the Coalition for Rainforest Nations, Papua New Guinea - Policy Leadership Category (co-winner)
- Janine Benyus, United States - Science & Innovation Category
- Ron Gonen, United States - Entrepreneurial Vision Category
- Tulsi Tanti, India - Entrepreneurial Vision Category
- Yann Arthus-Bertrand, France - Inspiration & Action Category
- Balgis Osman-Elasha, Sudan from Africa - For her work on climate change and adaptation in northern and eastern Africa.
- Atiq Rahman, Bangladesh from Asia and the Pacific - For his national and international experience in sustainable development, and environment and resource management. He is one of the leading specialists in the field.
- Albert II, Prince of Monaco, Monaco from Europe: For his commitment to sustainable development in Monaco. Under his leadership, Monaco is now applying an exemplary policy on CO2 reduction in every sphere of society as well as in the business sector.
- Liz Thompson, Barbados from Latin America and the Caribbean - For her outstanding work at the national and international levels. She is one of the recognized leaders on environmental issues of the Small Island Developing States (SIDS).
- Timothy E. Wirth, United States from North America - For his work as the head of the UN Foundation and Better World Fund, he established the environment as a priority and mobilized resources to address it.
- Abdul-Qader Ba-Jammal, Yemen from West Asia: For his environmental policies as Minister and then as Prime Minister in Yemen. He established its Ministry of Water and Environment and the Environment Protection Authority.
- Special Prize
- Helen Clark, New Zealand - For her environmental strategies and her three initiatives - the emissions trading scheme, the energy strategy and the energy efficiency and conservation strategy.
- Cherif Rahmani, Algeria from Africa - For advancing environmental law in Algeria and for addressing the issue of desertification;
- Elisea "Bebet" Gillera Gozun, Philippines from Asia and the Pacific - for pushing forward the environmental agenda in her native Philippines by winning the trust of business leaders, non-governmental organizations and political decision-makers alike;
- Viveka Bohn, Sweden from Europe: for playing a prominent role in multilateral negotiations and her leadership in global efforts to ensure chemical safety;
- Marina Silva, Brazil from Latin America and the Caribbean - For her tireless fight to protect the Amazon rainforest while taking into account the perspectives of people who use the resources in their daily lives;
- Al Gore, United States from North America - For making environmental protection a pillar of his public service and for educating the world on the dangers posed by rising greenhouse gas emissions;
- His Royal Highness Prince Hassan Bin Talal, Jordan from West Asia - For his belief in transboundary collaboration to protect the environment and for addressing environmental issues in a holistic manner;
- Special Prize
- Jacques Rogge and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) - For advancing the sport and environment agenda by providing greater resources to sustainable development and for introducing stringent environmental requirements for cities bidding to host Olympic Games
- Rosa Elena Simeon Negrin, Cuba
- Women's Environment & Development Organization
- Tewolde Berhan Gebre Egziabher, Ethiopia
- Masoumeh Ebtekar, Iran
- Mohamed El-Ashry, Egypt
- Tommy Koh Thong Bee, Singapore
- Mikhail Gorbachev, Russia
- Stephanie George, New Zealand
- King Jigme Singye Wangchuck and the people of Bhutan, Bhutan
- Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, United Arab Emirates
- Thabo Mbeki, South Africa
- Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, Native Greek
- Sheila Watt-Cloutier, Canada
- Julia Carabias Lillo, Mexico
- Zhou Qiang and the All-China Youth Federation, China
- "First-Ever UNEP 'Champions of the Earth' Presented to Seven Environmental Leaders". unep.org. UNEP. 19 April 2005. Retrieved 12 September 2017.
- Töpfer, Klaus (October 2004). "UNEP Launches new Award - Chamions of the Earth: Letter from UNEP Executive Director to Laureates" (PDF). Global 500 Forum - Newsletter of the UNEP Global 500 Laureates. UNEP. p. 3. Retrieved 12 September 2017.
- "Paul Polman | UNEP.org". Web.unep.org. Retrieved 2015-10-26.
- Champions of the Earth, United Nations Environment Programme
- Database of all laureates at: "Laureates". unep.org. UNEP. Retrieved 12 September 2017.