Media Release: Bob Brown Foundation presents 10th annual awards to outstanding environmentalists – they represent 'real achievement for a world in environmental crisis'.

Bob Brown Foundation presented its 10th annual Environment Awards last night to prize winners from across Australia and one from Papua New Guinea.

Established in 2012, the awards recognise environmentalists who have demonstrated resolute courage and conviction in taking a stand for environmental protection, preservation and justice.

This year’s winners are:

Environmentalist of the Year - Jess Beckerling, WA Forest Alliance

Long-standing campaigner for the forests and wildlife of south-west WA, Jess has been involved in the WA forest campaign for 24 years. In 2021, Jess led the campaign in WA to reach an end to native forest logging in Western Australia, with a transition by 2024. This is the first time in Australia that such a significant swift transition and commitment to ending native forest logging has occurred. Jess has been fighting for the forests of SW WA since she was 17. She is currently convener and campaign director for the WA Forest Alliance as well as Chair of the local Southwest Environment Group. Jess has been convenor of WAFA since 2011. Her commitment, skill and energy have been instrumental in protecting WA's unique forests, including a 12-month ban on 9,000 ha of karri logging.


Young Environmentalists of the Year - Litigants in Sharma v Minister for Environment case

In September 2020, eight young people from around Australia, with the assistance of 86 year-old litigation guardian Sister Brigid Arthur, brought a class action against the Federal Minister for the Environment. They argued that the Minister has a duty to avoid causing future harm from carbon emissions that would result from the approval of the proposed Vickery Extension Project in New South Wales. If approved, the coal burned from the Vickery Extension Project will result in 100 million tonnes of carbon emissions over the next 25 years, further fuelling the climate crisis. The students argued that approving the mine would breach the Minster’s duty of care. The Minister denied any duty of care was owed to the children or that the project would cause the harm they described.

Anjali Sharma – 17, Melbourne, VIC
Tomas Webster Arbizu – 17, Adelaide, SA – Tom will be joining us in Hobart for the award ceremony
Bella Burgemeister – 15, Bunbury, WA – Bella will be joining us in Hobart for the award ceremony
Luca Saunders -16, Blue Mountains, NSW
Izzy Raj-Seppings - 15, Sydney, NSW
Laura Kirwan – 17, Sydney, NSW
Ambrose Hayes – 16, Sydney, NSW
Ava Princi – 18, Sydney, NSW
Veronica Hester – 18, Sydney


Community Environmental Prize - Alliance of Solwara Warriors

The Alliance of Solwara Warriors has built a powerful movement across Papua New Guinea over the past 5 years, against deep-sea mining, the impacts of climate change, logging, oil palm developments and deep-sea tailings disposal of mine waste into their rivers and seas.

Deni Greene Award - Rob Blakers

Rob Blakers is one of Australia's premier wilderness photographers. He has used his photographic skills to help promote conservation since the 1980's Franklin dam campaign. Rob has been using new imaging technology that allows for a better representation of nature than ever before – photos and videos can be powerful tools to help combat the escalating climate and biodiversity crises.

"Our Environmentalists of the Year underscore the rising tide of intelligent, determined Australians taking action against the unnecessary loss and destruction of this nation’s storehouse of nature. They represent real achievement for a world in environmental crisis: such as the end of native forest logging in Western Australia, halting undersea mining in Papua New Guinea and winning a Federal Court judgment that government is responsible for inaction in the climate crisis. Tasmanian environmental photographer Rob Blakers has won the Deni Greene prize for his lifetime achievements for wilderness,” said Bob Brown.

“In every case, whether opposing the opening of new coal mines or saving forests or marine ecosystems in this age of climate emergency and deliberated mass extinction, these world citizens have shown remarkable intelligence and courage. They have taken exemplary action for our one and only living planet, Earth,” said Bob Brown.


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  • Adam Burling
    published this page in Media Releases 2021-11-25 12:32:15 +1100