Felix Finkbeiner

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Felix Finkbeiner
Felix Finkbeiner at the Plant-for-the-Planet Yucatán Reforestation Project.jpg
Finkbeiner at the Yucatán Reforestation Project (2018)
Born8 October 1997 (1997-10-08) (age 21)
Munich, Germany
Known forFounding Plant-for-the-Planet

Felix Finkbeiner (born 8 October 1997) is a German environmentalist and the founder of the international tree-planting and environmental advocacy organisation Plant-for-the-Planet.

Life and Education[edit]

Finkbeiner is the son of the businessman, activist and member of the Club of Rome, Frithjof Finkbeiner and the textile engineer, Karolin Finkbeiner and has two sisters. He grew up in the Bavarian towns of Pähl and Uffing am Staffelsee. Starting in fourth grade, he attended Munich International School from which he graduated in 2015. After living in London for three years, he graduated with a BA in International Relations from SOAS, University of London in 2018. Since September 2018 he is a PhD student of environmental sciences at the Crowther Lab of ETH Zürich, where he studies the most effective approaches to forest restoration under Prof. Tom Crowther.[1]


In January 2007, when Finkbeiner was nine years old and in fourth grade, he gave a class presentation on global warming in which he suggested to classmates that children should plant one million trees in each country of the world. Together with many of his classmates, Felix planted a tree on 28 March 2007 and launched Plant-for-the-Planet. After three years, the initiative planted its millionth tree.[2] At age 10 he spoke in the European Parliament and at age 13 at the UN General Assembly.[3]

A decade later, he leads an organisation with 130 employees internationally and 70,000 members in 67 countries.[4] Plant-for-the-Planet has hosted over 1,200 Academies during which participants between 10 and 14 learn about global warming and the importance of trees, practice public speaking and make plans on how they want to contribute to tackling global warming.

The organisation currently restores 22,500 hectares of forest on the Yucatán Peninsula in Mexico by planting on average one tree every 15 seconds. Furthermore, Plant-for-the-Planet leads the UN Billion Tree Campaign, as part of which 14 billion trees have been planted so far by contributing companies, organisations and governments. [5]

Plant-for-the-Planet's The Change Chocolate ("Die Gute Schokolade") is sold in 20,000 stores throughout Germany and Austria. The chocolate is Fair Trade and carbon neutral. The profits are used to fund the tree-planting efforts in Yucatán. Thus, with every five bars sold, one tree is planted.[6]

Honours and Awards[edit]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ "Meet the Lab". Crowther Lab. Retrieved 13 September 2018.
  2. ^ A million trees and counting - German boy activist fights climate change Deutsche Welle, 21 June 2010.
  3. ^ Wipfelstürmer Süddeutsche Zeitung, 9 March 2018.
  4. ^ Wipfelstürmer Süddeutsche Zeitung, 9 March 2018.
  5. ^ Wipfelstürmer Süddeutsche Zeitung, 9 March 2018.
  6. ^ Die Gute Schokolade Die Gute Schokolade, 21 November 2018.
  7. ^ Steinmeier verleiht Felix Finkbeiner das Bundesverdienstkreuz Bayerischer Rundfunk, 22 May 2018.
  8. ^ Das Ranking der Entscheider, Focus, December 2018
  9. ^ "Announcing the 2016 JCI TOYP Honorees". JCI. Retrieved 13 September 2018.
  10. ^ 1000 Milliarden Bäume für unsere Zukunft: Das Magazin Reader's Digest zeichnet den 17-jährigen Zukunfts-Aktivisten Felix Finkbeiner als "Europäer des Jahres 2015" aus In: presseportal.de 20 January 2015
  11. ^ "Deutscher Kulturpreis: Kardinal und 16-jähriger Umweltaktivist geehrt". Bayerisches Staatsministerium für Unterricht und Kultus. Retrieved 13 September 2018.
  12. ^ "Gewinner des Bürgerkulturpreises 2013 stehen fest - Landtag zeichnet neun Projekte aus ganz Bayern aus". Bayerischer Landtag. Retrieved 13 September 2018.
  13. ^ Die Hundert Einflussreichsten Deutschen, Focus, October 2011
  14. ^ Green giants: the eco power list The Guardian, 16 Januar 2011.
  15. ^ "Laudatio zur Verleihung der Bayerischen Staatsmedaille für Verdienste um die Umwelt 2009". Bayerisches Staatsministerium für Umwelt und Verbraucherschutz. Retrieved 13 September 2018.