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Increase global awareness and switch people mindset to action by creating a new dedicated Nobel Prize for Actions Against Climate Change



In October the special UN Report on Climate Change was released with alarming forecasts, but it was quickly buried by the constant cycle of breaking news. This was in complete disregard with the massive mobilization that will be needed everyday in every aspect of our lives to be able to curb our trajectory and divide our current emissions by two by 2030. The fight against climate change needs to be front and center. We need to give it as much spotlight as we can.

The same week the report was released, the Nobel Prizes were awarded. As the most prestigious awards, the Nobel Prizes benefit from global coverage for a week, and their laureates are given a platform for years. 

In his will, Alfred Nobel specified that the prizes were awarded for work that was « for the greatest benefit to humankind ». We believe that there is no greater benefit to mankind than to fight humanity’s most imminent threat: climate change.

How would this Climate Nobel Prize be different from the Nobel already awarded?

First, in its scope. The Climate Nobel would reward those who, through exemplary actions or groundbreaking discoveries, are doing the most or best to tackle climate change through mitigation and removal of emissions or adaptation.

Second, in its frequency. Having a dedicated Prize on climate change would keep it a priority every year. 

By focusing on action and by leveraging the goodwill of the Nobel Prize, this Prize could work not only as a focus of our attention to this crucial treat but could also contribute in switching people mind to "action" by showing role models or discoveries that give us hope.




Is this proposal for a practice or a project?


What actions do you propose?

A worldwide petition has been launched in October to ask the Nobel Foundation to consider the creation of this new Nobel Prize.

Actions are focused on disseminating the petition through social media, traditional media coverage and word-of-mouth.

This process itself, once the petition starts to reach a broader audience, will also help raise awareness around the issue and the 12 years timeline which is given to us by the latest reports of the IPCC released in October and UNEP released in November 2018.

Who will take these actions?

At this early stage of the petition:

  • Launchers of the petition and early supporters
  • Local environmental groups and NGOs
  • Local media

More mature stage:

  • National media
  • Top influencers

Where will these actions be taken?

To reflect both the global nature of Climate Change and the International appeal of the Nobel prize, the petition is accessible worldwide.

Traductions of the petition in languages other than English are accessible via the FB page of the Petition to allow for the widest outreach.

In addition, specify the country or countries where these actions will be taken.


Country 2

No country selected

Country 3

No country selected

Country 4

No country selected

Country 5

No country selected


What impact will these actions have on greenhouse gas emissions and/or adapting to climate change?

The action will not have by itself any direct impact on greenhouse gas emissions. However, if the prize is created it will reward actions and discoveries in 3 areas:

  1. mitigation of emissions
  2. removal of past emissions already in the atmosphere
  3. adaptation

The goal is that the Prize will contribute to promote behavioral change and empower people to act as they will see role models.

What are other key benefits?


What are the proposal’s projected costs?

Prize Money: Roughly $1,11M a year (or the equivalent of the money given to other laureates) to fund the Prize should the Nobel Foundation require the prize to be founded outside of their own fund. For instance, the 5 initial prizes are funded using the assets of the Nobel Foundation whereas the "Nobel" in Economic Science is administered by the Nobel Foundation but was initially funded by a donation made by the Swedish Central Bank in 1968.

The Fund could be set up as the People's Fund for the Nobel prize for Action Against Climate Change. The fund will be open to donations (including individual micro-contributions).

To ensure cost efficiency, the Nobel Foundation should set a lump sum to be paid at once to ensure they administered and fund the Prize every year, using the same model as with the Swedish Central Bank.

Administrative cost of the People's Fund for the Nobel Prize for Action Against Climate Change:  A non-profit would be in charge of fundraising to gather this donation. The money could be gathered over a year due to the publicity the creation of such Prize will entail. A paid ngo-fundraising director and a team of volunteers could do the fundraising.

Approx Cost:

Fundraising director: salary $64K/year (average pay for this position)

12 month of coworking space (private office): $650/Mo - $7560/year



The goal is to be able to have the Nobel Foundation consider this proposal by the end of 2019 at the latest.

About the author(s)

Helene and Raoul Costa, USA, launched and currently supporting the petition

Related Proposals


Alfred Nobel's will