Heroes

This incredible art project in Paris uses heartbeats to plant trees. Here's how.

The Eiffel Tower knows how to go green and looks great doing it.

This incredible art project in Paris uses heartbeats to plant trees. Here's how.
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Natural Resources Defense Council

Plenty of folks have seen the Eiffel Tower.

Photo via iStock.


And it's certainly a sight to see on any occasion.

But until Sunday night, no one had seen it quite like this...

All GIFs via Here Now/YouTube.

In dazzling fashion, images and graphics were projected onto the tower the day before COP21 began in Paris.

The installation lit up the sky with its forest theme on Nov. 29, 2015, a day ahead of COP21 (that's short for the Conferences of Parties), the United Nations' climate change summit, which runs through Dec. 4.

The project, titled "1 Heart 1 Tree" and created by artist Naziha Mestaoui, is aimed at drawing attention to the conference and encouraging leaders to (wake up and) set ambitious goals to reduce carbon emissions.

Photo courtesy of 1 Heart 1 Tree, used with permission.

The best part? You can be part of Mestaoui's creation.

By downloading an app and using its sensor to monitor your heartbeat, the pumping of your heart will create a growing "branch" on the tower's tree. (How freaking cool is that?!) You can view it in the app on your phone and share with friends on social media.

But that's not all. Through the project's partnered reforestation programs, app users also purchase an actual tree to be planted when they buy a virtual one for the tower. So far, the app has ensured about 50,000 trees will be planted because of "1 Heart 1 Tree."

"I created this installation so that people everywhere can realize what is possible if we come together," Mestaoui said in a speech on Sunday, according to a press release provided to Upworthy.

"We can protect and regrow our forests, we can tap the natural powers of the sun, the wind, the earth and the sea, and we can build a safer future if we go 100% clean energy for everyone."

COP21 is a truly historic event — one that could actually spark a major shift in the fight against climate change.

Leaders from more than 150 countries around the world have gathered in Paris to nail down the specifics as to how each can do its fair share to cut way back on carbon emissions.

It's the largest gathering of heads of state — ever.


The end goal is to reduce the world's collective carbon footprint to ensure global temperatures don't exceed 2 degrees Celsius of what they were before the industrial revolution of the late-1700s. Because, as climate science tells us, that would be absolutely awful.

The conference is just starting but, so far, news out of the summit seems promising.

For starters, take the summit's guest list — (practically) the whole world is seriously committed to fighting climate change. That includes major polluters, like the U.S., India, China, and Russia.


Also, news of Bill Gates' multibillion-dollar initiative to unite the world with clean energy investments is already making waves as a game-changing strategy to make our energy sources greener while also helping eradicate poverty in the developing world.

Basically, it's a huge win-win.

"1 Heart 1 Tree" serves as a powerful reminder that the beauty of art can have an immeasurable impact.

Lighting up The Eiffel Tower won't stop climate change on its own — but it can inspire the hearts and minds of those who are dedicated to trying their best.

Check out incredible footage of "1 Heart 1 Tree" below:

RODNAE Productions via Pexels
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The past year has changed the way a lot of people see the world and brought the importance of global change to the forefront. However, even social impact entrepreneurs have had to adapt to the changing circumstances brought on by the Coronavirus pandemic.

"The first barrier is lack of funding. COVID-19 has deeply impacted many of our supporters, and we presume it will continue to do so. Current market volatility has caused many of our supporters to scale back or withdraw their support altogether," said Brisa de Angulo, co-founder of A Breeze of Hope Foundation, a non-profit that prevents childhood sexual violence in Bolivia and winner of the 2020 Elevate Prize.

To help social entrepreneurs scale their impact for the second year in a row, The Elevate Prize is awarding $5 million to 10 innovators, activists, and problem–solvers who are making a difference in their communities every day.

"We want to see extraordinary people leading high-impact projects that are elevating opportunities for all people, elevating issues and their solutions, or elevating understanding of and between people," The Elevate Prize website states.

Founded in 2019 by entrepreneur and philanthropist Joseph Deitch, The Elevate Prize is dedicated to giving unsung social entrepreneurs the necessary resources to scale their impact and to ultimately help inspire and awaken the hero in all of us.

"The Elevate Prize remains committed to finding a radically diverse group of innovative problem solvers and investing unconventional and personalized resources that bring greater visibility to them as leaders and the vital work they do. We make good famous," said Carolina García Jayaram, executive director, Elevate Prize Foundation.

The application process will take place in two phases. Applicants have till May 5 for Phase 1, which will include a short written application. A select number of those applicants will then be chosen for Phase 2, which includes a more robust set of questions later this summer. Ten winners will be announced in October 2021.

In addition to money, winners will also receive support from The Elevate Prize to help amplify their mission, achieve their goals, and receive mentorship and industry connections.

Last year, 1,297 candidates applied for the prize.

The 10 winners include Simprints, a UK-based nonprofit implementing biometric solutions to give people in the developing world hope and access to a better healthcare system; ReThink, a patented, innovative app that detects offensive messages and gives users a chance to reconsider posting them; and Guitars Over Guns, an organization bridging the opportunity gap for youth from vulnerable communities through transformational access to music, connectivity, and self-empowerment.

You can learn more about last year's winners, here.

If you know of someone or you yourself are ready to scale your impact, apply here today.

Just over a year into the coronavirus pandemic, we're finally seeing a light at the end of our socially distanced tunnel. We still have a ways to go, but with millions of vaccines being doled out daily, we're well on our way toward somewhat normal life again. Hallelujah.

As we head toward that light, it's natural to look back over our shoulders at the past year to see what we're leaving behind. There's the "good riddance" stuff of course—the mass deaths, the missing loved ones, the closed-up businesses, the economic, social and political strife—which no one is going to miss.

But there's personal stuff, too. As we reflect on how we coped, how we spent our time, what we did and didn't do this past year, we're thinking about what we'll be bringing out of the tunnel with us.

And some of us are finding that comes with a decent dose of regret. Maybe a little guilt. Some disappointment as we go down the coulda-woulda-shoulda road.

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RODNAE Productions via Pexels
True

The past year has changed the way a lot of people see the world and brought the importance of global change to the forefront. However, even social impact entrepreneurs have had to adapt to the changing circumstances brought on by the Coronavirus pandemic.

"The first barrier is lack of funding. COVID-19 has deeply impacted many of our supporters, and we presume it will continue to do so. Current market volatility has caused many of our supporters to scale back or withdraw their support altogether," said Brisa de Angulo, co-founder of A Breeze of Hope Foundation, a non-profit that prevents childhood sexual violence in Bolivia and winner of the 2020 Elevate Prize.

To help social entrepreneurs scale their impact for the second year in a row, The Elevate Prize is awarding $5 million to 10 innovators, activists, and problem–solvers who are making a difference in their communities every day.

"We want to see extraordinary people leading high-impact projects that are elevating opportunities for all people, elevating issues and their solutions, or elevating understanding of and between people," The Elevate Prize website states.

Founded in 2019 by entrepreneur and philanthropist Joseph Deitch, The Elevate Prize is dedicated to giving unsung social entrepreneurs the necessary resources to scale their impact and to ultimately help inspire and awaken the hero in all of us.

"The Elevate Prize remains committed to finding a radically diverse group of innovative problem solvers and investing unconventional and personalized resources that bring greater visibility to them as leaders and the vital work they do. We make good famous," said Carolina García Jayaram, executive director, Elevate Prize Foundation.

The application process will take place in two phases. Applicants have till May 5 for Phase 1, which will include a short written application. A select number of those applicants will then be chosen for Phase 2, which includes a more robust set of questions later this summer. Ten winners will be announced in October 2021.

In addition to money, winners will also receive support from The Elevate Prize to help amplify their mission, achieve their goals, and receive mentorship and industry connections.

Last year, 1,297 candidates applied for the prize.

The 10 winners include Simprints, a UK-based nonprofit implementing biometric solutions to give people in the developing world hope and access to a better healthcare system; ReThink, a patented, innovative app that detects offensive messages and gives users a chance to reconsider posting them; and Guitars Over Guns, an organization bridging the opportunity gap for youth from vulnerable communities through transformational access to music, connectivity, and self-empowerment.

You can learn more about last year's winners, here.

If you know of someone or you yourself are ready to scale your impact, apply here today.