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Elena Chen and Yeb Saño

Learn more about ActNowFilm participants Yu Chen (Elena) and Naderev ‘Yeb’ Saño.


Photos of ActNowFilm participants Elena Chen and Yeb Saño, with their names displayed underneath. The bottom of the picture features the ActNowFilm logo and the film title “Youth climate leaders in conversation with climate experts”.
Elena Chen and Yeb Saño are one of 30 pairs of youth climate leaders and climate experts from across the world matched for 1-2-1 conversations as part of this year’s ActNowFilm.

ActNowFilm: youth climate leaders in conversation with climate experts is an international youth voices in climate change project, selected to showcase at COP28. The film is based on 1-2-1 conversations between 30 pairs of youth climate leaders and world leading climate experts.

Yu Chen (Elena) from China is in her final undergraduate year at the University of St Andrews, UK, where she studies Management and Sustainable Development. She has a particular interest in climate education and traditional/indigenous knowledge and communities, and enabling these groups to take effective climate action.

She started her charity program – “Art to the countryside” – at the age of 10, which included her travelling to Inner Mongolia and Anhui province to teach rural children dancing. From 2019 to 2021, she led a team of five to build 12 science and technology classrooms in rural China, which benefited 23,398 rural students and 568 rural teachers.

Elena went to COP26 as part of a Chinese youth organisation and to COP27 as a party overflow delegate. This summer, she worked on a new programme in Inner Mongolia focused on climate education.

Naderev ‘Yeb’ Saño is a climate justice activist from the Philippines and the executive director of Greenpeace Southeast Asia. He is also the vice chair of the board of the Laudato Si’ Movement and serves on the international board of

A veteran of the environmental movement for close to three decades, Yeb has worked with local communities and international bodies on issues such as: clean energy, biodiversity, coastal and marine resources, disaster risk reduction, local governance, and human rights. He has led a team in the landmark human rights case filed against the top fossil fuel companies at the Commission on Human Rights.

Previously, Yeb served as commissioner of the Philippines’ Climate Change Commission. He was also the Philippines’ chief negotiator for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and is widely known as a champion for climate justice and voice for developing countries in the UN. In the wake of Typhoon Haiyan, Yeb delivered an emotional speech during the United Nations Climate Summit in Warsaw in 2013 and underwent 14 days of fasting in solidarity with the typhoon victims.

Yeb also spent time as a spiritual ambassador for OurVoices, an international, multi-faith campaign for strong climate action and climate justice. He also serves as co-convenor of the Asian Energy Network and of the Fight Inequality Alliance Asia. He is an active member of the Philippine Movement for Climate Justice.


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