Desmond D’Sa

Desmond D’Sa is the winner of a 2014 Goldman Environmental Prize! The Goldman Prize, often called the “Green Nobel”, rewards extraordinary grassroots environmentalists. Mr. D’Sa was nominated by Thousand Currents for the world’s largest prize for environmental activism for his victorious campaign against the Bulbul toxic landfill site.

Read more about his award and watch his video profile on this announcement page.

D’Sa has, for over two decades, been a watchdog snapping at the heels of errant companies, particularly major oil refineries, which have polluted their way through decades of industrial expansion in south Durban, South Africa. In 1995 he was the founding chairperson of The South Durban Community Environmental Alliance (SDCEA), an alliance of 16 community organizations addressing environmental and human rights issues.

Desmond is currently the SDCEA Coordinator, and a coordinator of the Right2KNOW Campaign, a national campaign against the draft secrecy laws such as the Protection of Information Bill and the Media Appeals Tribunal. Desmond is a tireless campaigner and also serves as the Coordinator for the Durban Social Forum and sits on a number of activist boards and church organizations.

Media around the world covered the story of Desmond’s winning the Goldman Environmental Prize. Click here for the full set of articles, videos and radio interviews. Desmond appeared in this episode of Democracy Now with Amy Goodman and KPFK’s Earth Segment. You can also watch his speech from the 2008 Global Greens plenary on Sustainable Cities.

I personally derive a hell of a lot of personal satisfaction from taking on the multi-national corporations and getting them to clean up their mess. SDCEA has helped a great deal by providing the evidence needed to persuade the government to introduce new environmental legislation as part of our progressive national constitution. It’s extremely rewarding seeing that the toxic levels of chemicals have been reduced because of our campaign.

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