Kids are wonderful creatures to learn from for their preserved instinctual drives, as yet uncompromised by social anxieties or expectations. Operating like this, they can be inspiring problem solvers, finding simple and unique solutions to complicated problems. The realms of science and environmentalism have their own roster of young keeners setting industry sights on new perspectives and developments for the future.
Birke Baehr is one such underage wonder. The “future organic farmer” is part of TedXNextGeneration, where at 11-years old he spoke out against Monsanto and CAFOs (Confined Animal Feeding Operations), and the gravity of GMO foods, pesticides and herbicides on global markets and healthy populations. He has since written a children’s book and been featured in a number of health and food system documentaries.
Birke, now 13, got a collective cheek pinch from the internet when he stated: “A while back I wanted to be an NFL football player, but now I want to be an organic farmer instead. ..Some people say buying organic or local is too expensive. But is it really? [It seems to me that] we can either pay the farmer or we can pay the hospital.”
Watch Birke Baehr’s talk on TedXNextGeneration:
This year in 2013, Jamba Juice will entirely phase out its use of Styrofoam, thanks to the actions of one 10-year old. Mia Hansen started a change.org petition last year asking the smoothie giant to stop using the harmful substance in its packaging. The company agreed with Mia and the more than 130,000 signatures behind her cause.
With 752 [Jamba Juice] locations throughout the U.S., Canada, Philippines, South Korea and the Bahamas and sales totaling $263 million in 2010, that’s a whole lot of polystyrene entering the waste cycle every day. –Earth911
“It made me feel like anyone of any age in any country can really make a difference in the world,” Mia said on her petition page.
In New York, 14-year old Deepika Kurup can’t vote, drink or drive, but she has already garnered international acclaim as “America’s Top Young Scientist” for inventing a solar-powered jug that harnesses energy from the sun to disinfect contaminated drinking water. Her invention, inspired by a trip to India, won her $25,000 from Discovery Education and 3M. One billion people globally go without access to potable water sources.
Watch Deepika present her project:
There is no shortage of inspiring youth leading the way in eco-innovation, regenerating health and sciences with possibility for combatting the issues that plague our planet and people.