[Teens] have never known a day without climate emergency. Eco-anxiety is [their] constant. And [they] know, like you know water is wet, that the worst trap is defeatist thinking, cynicism, or complacency. A loud chorus says we’re running out of time. . . . It’s probably too late already. . . . I’m only one person . . . and what difference can one person make? Girls Who Green the World is about fighters who have no patience for any of that doubt. It’s a magic doorway into an alternate universe of possibility, buzzing and whirring with mad scientists and doers, every single one racing impatiently to head off planetary disaster. In these pages are thirty-four intrepid changemakers who choose possibility. They refuse to be cowed by a ticking clock. I could have included 234 more women. That’s because there’s a revolution happening, and there are hundreds and thousands of revolutionaries to admire. They are turning exhaled breath into chicken, mushrooms into leather, and plastic bottles into boardshorts that turn into carseat stuffing. They are hell- bent on reviving our oceans, heating homes with carbon- neutral geothermal energy, and dying jeans with bioengineered indigo that doesn’t turn rivers in China black. This new guard is breaking from the environmental movement’s problematic roots. They are facing down the grave injustices to Native people and lands, reckoning with the outsized burdens of pollution and chemical exposure thrust on marginalized communities, insisting on environmental justice. They recognize clean air and water as human rights. Some of the advances are half measures, a change in mindset on the way toward becoming a change in paradigm. Biodegradable glitter. Ugly pickles, made from misshapen cukes that would otherwise be tossed. These initiatives matter as much as the biggies. Sure, chips made of the pulp from juicing machines won’t instantly lower the methane meter, but when their creator, Kaitlin Mogentale, expands Pulp Pantry into an empire, upcycling billions of pounds of byproduct into cereal, pie crusts, pasta, tortillas, flour . . . that is how we change the entire industrial food complex. These trailblazers make cool heroes— they are highly trained chemical engineers and theoretical high-energy physicists, contrarian biologists and agriculture scientists, deft marketers and business mavericks. They are selling the world on solar, planting carbon-sequestering (and tasty) sea vegetables, and cleaning toxins out of water, backyards, and cosmetics. One blocked the Dakota Access Pipeline with the weight of her body. They are making waves as agitators, policy wonks, culture shifters, and inventors. Oh, and they are all women.Despite their brilliance and cunning, recognition for these women is still too rare. They receive too little funding and not enough ink. Most of the women you’ll read about here are young. Young people have always driven social change. Ruby Bridges was just six when she walked her bobbysocked feet up the steps of William Frantz Elementary School, where all the students were white, and she became the first Black student there. Emma González was a high schooler when she woke the world up to gun madness. The Vietnam War was brought down by young people. And Greta Thunberg. Greta! In 2018 she was a lone schoolgirl sitting outside Sweden’s Parliament, demanding attention. The next year she had 1.6 million schoolkids in thirty countries taking climate change ultimatums to the streets. Rhiana Gunn-Wright, age thirty-three, was inspired by these young activists. It’s girls like Ruby and Greta that Rhiana was thinking about when she put pen to paper and sketched the tenets of the Green New Deal. The plan creates new jobs, new industries even, curbs airline and car pollution. It insists on equity, and turns upside down practically everything we know about industry and government. Some have called it impossible. Others have ridiculed it.Not the girls inheriting this planet. On the morning after the 2021 inauguration, a dozen youth activists, all but one of them girls, posted an open letter to President Biden and Vice President Harris. Biden’s stated goal of achieving net-zero emissions by 2050 is simply too late. “Be braver,” they wrote. “People are burning, drowning, and dying. Enough,” the young environmentalists implored.Biden heard. He revised his targets, lopping off fifteen years to achieve a carbon-free power sector by 2035.You have power. Presidents are listening to you. Just cracking open this book, you have set off a cultural chain reaction that cannot stop. These thirty-four trailblazers, they are links in that chain, too. Susan Solomon and her ozone discovery, she was a link in that chain, too, as women have always been and will continue to be on the frontlines of this movement. Instead of being fueled by a universal CFC ban, this transformation is fueled by insistence and persistence. By a sense of possibility. By hope. Theirs and yours.