“There is much more diversity going on than before. I feel like the faces and the voices are not just of white, rich people. It’s of people from all kinds of backgrounds and actually from all around the world.”
“For a long time I was really putting the idea out there and getting a lot of traction in the press and seeking to inspire and educate people about this possibility as the future of energy,” Redmond says.
The surfaces created by Redmond’s company, PowerLeap, use piezoelectricity, which converts the vibrations from walking, dancing or running into energy that can be stored for future use.
In "The Next Eco-Warriors," Native American activist Enie Begaye shares the story behind the Black Mesa Coalition, an inter-tribal, inter-ethnic organization founded to end strip mining on the Navaho reservation’s land in Northern Arizona.
“It does have environmental effects on the land and that pollution of the land, air and water, but it also had really cultural and social effects for us in this area, Black Mesa,” says Begaye.
They won that battle, but immediately faced another - fossil fuel development was a major provider of jobs on the reservation. Their mission now, Begaye says, is to create “green jobs.”
“An example is using our traditional knowledge and combining it with maybe our western education. We take something like weaving. A lot of women do weave rugs from sheep wool. Taking that and maybe combining it with marketing structure and building a weavers’ co-op that can market those rugs through the Internet and we’ll be able to reach a whole new audience of customers.”
To explore those possibilities and spread their message, Hunter says, these new eco-warriors are using all the new technology at their disposal.
“I think the old tools are just not as effective as they used to be. Hanging a banner or lobbying government or signing a petition, while all that can still be effective, but it’s no longer as effective as it used to be 30 or 40 years ago. I think it’s more effective using a whole new assortment of tools including the Internet, social networking, using websites to connect people, being able to create a space where people from all over the world can connect, can learn about events and actions, take part and can really build a global kind of movement.”
That’s why Hunter believes this is an exciting time for the environmental movement. She challenges young people to become change makers in their communities and their world.