Time Magazine has named Kenya’s President William Ruto as one of the top 100 leaders in the world who are making a big difference in helping the environment.
He announced the list during the week when he organized a national holiday to plant 100 million trees in one day.
Mr Ruto was chosen with the mayor of Freetown, Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr.
Architect Francis Kéré from Burkina Faso and entrepreneur Kidus Asfaw from Ethiopia were also on the Time list.
The “Time 100 Climate” ranking was released on Thursday. It’s the first time the magazine has tried to name people who are important in addressing climate change around the world.
Time chose those who have made big progress in fighting climate change while also creating value for their businesses.
The magazine chose the honourees because they have recently made successful and measurable progress in fighting climate change, instead of just making promises and announcements.
Mr Ruto has been speaking out about helping with the effects of climate change in Kenya and Africa.
The special day to plant trees on 13 November was a small part of his big goal for Kenya to plant 15 billion trees in 10 years.
In September, he held the first Africa Climate Summit in Kenya’s capital, Nairobi. They asked big polluters to give more help to poorer countries.
Some environmentalists say Mr. Ruto is a hypocrite because he promotes planting trees but doesn’t stop illegal logging in public forests.
Last month, a court that deals with issues about the environment stopped Mr Ruto from lifting a ban on logging that was put in place in 2018.
In October, he said that people should be made to leave the 380,000-hectare Mau Forest.
Some people who care about the environment think it’s good to protect the forest. But others say the government kicked out the Ogiek people, who have lived there for a long time, just to make money from carbon offsetting.
MrRuto is being recognized as a leader for taking action on climate change. The World Bank said on Friday that if Kenya doesn’t do something about climate change, its economy could shrink by 7. 25%
Time named Francis Kéré an architect for his creative and environmentally friendly building designs. He worked on projects like state houses in Benin and his own country, Burkina Faso.
In 2022, he was the first black person from Africa to win the important Pritzker Architecture Prize.
Mr Asfaw has a small business that turns old plastic into cheap and eco-friendly building materials.
Time magazine said that his new company provides a fast and long-lasting way to fix the lack of houses as the population in Africa keeps increasing.
Mayor Aki-Sawyerr was recognized for “working to protect the environment and make the city better prepared for climate change. ” She did things like creating a plan to deal with climate change in Freetown and hiring someone to help with extreme heat in the city, which had never been done in Sierra Leone or Africa before.